Ryan Howard’s return to the lineup on Thursday got off to a great start when he made a diving play to get an out at 1st against the New York Mets.
With nobody on base and 1 out in the top of the 6th inning, batter James Loney connected on a 1-0 delivery from Philadelphia Phillies reliever, Luis Garcia. When the ball was hit, it bounced off the foot of Garcia and went towards the Mets dugout for what appeared to be an easy base hit. Unfortunately for Loney, Howard was able to track down the ball and grab it before sprinting towards 1st base to dive in time to get the out. Despite the great play, it wouldn’t be enough to get the Phillies the win, as they lost 9-8 in extra innings on an Asdrubal Cabrera walk-off home run.
Howard, 36, has had a relatively weird offensive season this year, but he does continue to provide some solid defensive play on a nightly basis. As of September 23, the former NL MVP has hit 23 HRs, 52 RBIs, and a whopping .195 batting average. Despite his struggles on the offensive side of the game this year, the veteran 1stbaseman will no doubt provide some memorable moments for the remainder of his career.
The Phillies will definitely acknowledge the great play from Howard as the team concludes another long season that will end out of the postseason. Following Thursday’s loss, Philadelphia sits 4th in the NL East with a record of 69-84, leaving them 20.5 games behind the 1st place Washington Nationals.
Howard and the Phillies will look to even the series as they begin Game 2 of a 4-game series against the Mets on Friday, with the 1st pitch at 7:10 p.m. EST.
All stats for this article are from Baseball-Reference.com
You can find Michael Mazzei on Twitter @MichaelMazzei3.