When the Phillies won the NL East in 2007 after Jimmy Rollins' "team to beat" prediction, they turned a lot of heads. In 2008, they reached the peak of the best era of Phillies baseball ever. That fateful night eight years ago (holy shit, I can't believe it's been eight years) changed so many things. It killed the curse of William Penn, ending a 25-year championship drought for the city. It ensured that names like Chase Utley, Ryan Howard, Jimmy Rollins, and Brad Lidge, among so many others, would never be forgotten in Philadelphia folklore. For me, it erased all doubt that I was a die-hard Phillies fan. I'll never forget that night: I was standing about a foot in front of the TV in my house with my dad and some of my siblings. My mom was in the other room listening on the radio, refusing to watch because she was too nervous. Then Lidge threw that slider to strike out Eric Hinske, and my house damn near erupted. Everyone going nuts, hugging each other, cheering, probably pissing off the neighbors. We didn't care. In that moment, we were truly on top of the world.
I can't wait for 2019, when all four of the major Philadelphia sports teams (hell, throw in the Soul for good measure) are just beginning their dynasties in their respective sports. Carson Wentz throwing 80-yard touchdowns for the Eagles, Dario Saric and Joel Embiid connecting for alley oops, Dylan Cozens and Rhys Hoskins bashing homers, and Shayne Gostisbehere and Ivan Provorov ripping clap bombs from the point for the Flyers. Just the thought has me feeling lightheaded.