For nine seasons, Pat Burrell had a home in Philadelphia. At first, it was home sweet home to him and after that, he was often booed and begged to leave the City of Sometimes Loved.
2008 was a different year though. Burrell enjoyed one of the best seasons of his career and in that same postseason, hit the biggest double of his career. It catapulted the Phillies into the next level as World Champions, or “World f***ing Champions” as his teammate, Chase Utley, exclaimed on the same day Burrell led the Phillies down Broad Street.
But Burrell’s career has been filled with ups and downs. He busted onto the scene his rookie year in 2000, belting 18 homers and 79 RBIs in his first season in the majors. After another strong 2001, Burrell had a career year in 2002, hitting .282 while hitting 32 homers and 117 RBIs, all career highs.
Burrell would only come close to those numbers one more time when he put up similar numbers in 2005. After that, the strike out machine would never bat over .260 until this season and has yet to drive in over 100 runs since 2005.
Burrell’s career numbers in Philadelphia were great, hitting 251 homers and driving in 827 runs. But Burrell struck out at least 120 times in his nine years in Philly.
After helping the Phils win their second World Championship in the franchise history, Burrell was a free agent. He signed with Tampa Bay as a designated hitter but wasn’t even close to anything that resembled what he did in Philadelphia as a power hitter.
Earlier in the season, Tampa Bay waived him and he was picked up by the Giants. There he turned his season around and is one of their weapons heading into their NLCS match-up with the Phillies.
Burrell’s time in Philadelphia was greatly appreciated. He’s been back several times, revered by fans at each occasion. Save the cheers for the regular season, folks. This is playoffs and Pat the Bat is standing in our way.