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The Philadelphia Phillies are a Major League Baseball team based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. They are also known by their nicknames , The Phils, The Fightin' Phils or simply, The Fightin's. The Philadelphia Athletics (now the Oakland Athletics) were once the club's crosstown rivals in the first half of the 20th century (1901-1954). Currently, the Phillies are the only major league franchise operating in Philadelphia.
The Phillies have played in the Eastern Division of the National League since the divisional realignment of 1969. They have the distinction of being the oldest continuous one-name, one-city franchise in all of American professional sports.
The Phillies were the record holder at one time for the longest World Series championship drought in baseball history at 97 years (1883-1980) . The Chicago Cubs (1908-present) broke this unfortunate record in 2005. Still, the Phillies have the inglorious mark as the most losing franchise of any US major sports league (9,956). The team will soon become the first professional franchise to reach 10,000 losses. The club has had its fair share of talent despite all its shortcomings. Currently, It claims 31 Hall of Famers
In 1883 Alfred Reach, united with Colonel John Rogers, to purchase the Worcester Brown Stockings of the National League and move them to Philadelphia. Alfred Reach was a former player and a sporting-goods manufacturer while Colonel John Rogers was a lawyer and politician. By the 1890s, the newly renamed Phillies (in homage to their home city) were posting consistently solid records of 70 or more wins, but none were enough to rise above mediocre standings or extend mere brushes of opportunity for a pennant or championship title.
The Phillies finally won their first pennant in 1915. It was their 33rd season.The win was mainly due to a bullpen boost led by star pitcher Grover Cleveland Alexander. He won an impressive 31 games while pitching four one-hit games. Offensively, Gavvy Cravath topped the league in RBI and runs scored.
During the bleak period for the franchise, the team saw the emergence of a a few remarkable players. In the 1920s, outfielder Cy Williams became the Phillies' new slugger, winning three consecutive NL Home Run Crowns. In the 1930s, a young Chuck Klein impressed all, batting alongside Lefty O'Doul. He won the NL MVP in 1932 and the NL Triple Crown a year later.
The teams name was changed to the Blue Jays during the 1940s. Several seasons later, It was changed back.
The Phillies traded popular backup catcher Sal Fasano to the New York Yankees for minor league infielder Hector Made on July 26, 2006. The Phillies also traded third baseman David Bell to the Milwaukee Brewers for minor league pitcher Wilfrido Laureano. The team responded well to the changes.
The Phillies record stood at 66-65, trailing the San Diego Padres by a mere .5 games for the lead in the wild card race. The Phillies had captured and lost the wild card lead and were tied with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Both teams went on the road for the final six games with identical 82-74 records; the Phillies to Washington and Florida, the Dodgers to Colorado and San Francisco. But the Phillies were eliminated from playoff contention at two games out with one left to play.
The Phillies made their first big acquisition of the 2006 off-season on Dec. 6 by acquiring pitcher Freddy Garcia from the Chicago White Sox for minor league pitchers Gavin Floyd (AAA in 2006) and Gio Gonzalez (AA in 2006). Wes Helms was also acquired as a free agent. He hit 329 and had 10 home runs in 240 at bats while playing for the Florida Marlins in the 2006 season.
The Phillies will begin the 2007 season with a home opener on April 2nd against the Atlanta Braves.
The Phillies intend to move their AAA affiliate to nearby Allentown, Pennsylvania in April 2008 where the team, called the Lehigh Valley IronPigs, will play in a newly-constructed stadium, Lehigh County Ballpark. This is 7,000-capacity stadium. The planned move has been greeted enthusiastically because it will bring the Phillies' AAA affiliate closer to the team's Philadelphia fan base while also moving the team into a new stadium.
The home uniform of the Phillies is white with red pinstripes and the road uniform is grey. Both bear the script-lettered Phillies with stars dotting the is across the chest, with the player name and number on the back. Hats are red with a single stylized P. Team colors are red and white.