During the spring of 2011, Jamie Moyer was crestfallen. Moyer was calling from Bradenton, Florida, to talk about his Jamie Moyer Foundation and how he planned to make a comeback at 49 post elbow surgery.
“You know this is the first time in 40 years that I am not going to be on a baseball field in March,” Moyer said.
When asked if he would visit the Phillies clubhouse in Clearwater that spring, Moyer balked at the possibility.
“I would feel uncomfortable not being in uniform,” Moyer said. “I’ve only been in the stands at a game twice in my life.”
Well, Moyer, who helped the Phillies win the World Series in 2008, will be in Clearwater this spring but not in red pinstripes. Moyer will be broadcasting games for the club he grew up rooting for in Souderton.
Matt Stairs, who was also part of the Phillies 2008 World Series championship team, will be in the booth as well. How will the new additions, who will replace Chris Wheeler and Gary ‘Sarge’ Matthews, go over as the new color guys?
“I like both additions,” WXPN general manager Roger LeMay said. “They’re both articulate, tied to the championship team and they have played on 22 teams (21 actually) between the two of them. So they should be able to comment about any organization intimately. But what remains to be seen is if they have chemistry with (play by play man) Tom (McCarthy.) We’ll see about that. I’m just ready for fresh insights. Adding Moyer and Stairs could be a really good thing.”
Moyer, a Souderton High alum, made his major league debut with the Cubs in 1985 against his boyhood idol Steve Carlton. Moyer won a staggering 269 games during his career. Not bad for a junkballer, who was encouraged by his father-in-law, former Notre Dame basketball coach Digger Phelps to quit pitching after some rough early seasons.
Moyer laughed when told that he should ask Phelps to refrain from giving career advice to his children.
“I guess he’s not so good at that,” Moyer said.
The highlight of Moyer’s career was winning his lone world championship. Stairs helped the Phillies win the second World Series title in club history by blasting a decisive pinch homer in game 4 of the 2008 NLCS against the Dodgers.
“I’ll never forget the home run that Stairs hit into the night,” LeMay said. “It was unbelievable. Adding Moyer and Stairs should be great. Moyer and Stairs could make this a fun summer.”
Comcast believes Moyer and Stairs will add to the fun quotient.
“We are thrilled to have World Series Champions Jamie Moyer and Matt Stairs join our Phillies broadcast team,” Comcast SportsNet President Brian Monihan said via a statement. “These two former Phillies bring a unique perspective to the booth, and their expert analysis will add a new level of energy, insight and enjoyment to our Phillies broadcasts.”