Ibanez comes through in clutch

Critics said his bat was slow. Fans wanted Domonic Brown. But Raul Ibanez’s confidence never waned.

Even when his average dipped into the low .230s, the 38-year-old Phillies left fielder always believed his offense would come.

“I knew it would come,” Ibanez said. “It had nothing to do with being older. I just had to get in a groove.”

That he did. Over the past two months of the season, Ibanez batted .347 with 29 RBIs.

“I’m seeing the ball well,” Ibanez said. “In this game, no one is ever going to feel sorry for you. You have to believe in yourself and believe that all the work you put in will come through. I never lost faith.”

That’s one of the unique things about this current group of Phillies. They believe in each other.

“You hear people say things like that, but it’s true here,” Ibanez said recently. “This is a team in every way.”

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