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Quote of the Day: Davey Johnson on Phillies’ fans

Aug 22, 2011, 9:58 AM EDT

Washington Nationals v Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Getty Images

Baiting Philly fans is, like, 40% of my job description, but I could jaw at ’em for a month and not do it quite as elegantly as Davey Johnson did after yesterday’s Nats-Phillies game:

“You gotta sit back down,” chuckling Nats Manager Davey Johnson said of all those invading fans who had to flop back in their seats en masse when Ian Desmond hit the most difficult kind of comeback homer that’s possible in baseball — down to your last strike, nobody on base.

That comes from Tom Boswell’s latest column about the weekend series in Washington in which all of the Phillies fans that come down and fill the park left sad after two of the three games.  Oh, and Johnson added this, which probably makes Boston fans a bit sad too:

“Kind of reminded me a little of ’86 [in the World Series] when the Red Sox were up on the front step [to celebrate] and then they started creeping back.”

Davey Johnson: master troll. As if I didn’t love him already.

  1. drmonkeyarmy - Aug 22, 2011 at 10:02 AM

    How is he knocking Phillies phans? Because they were excited about a potential victory? Here is an idea…sell tickets to your own fan base and people wouldn’t come marauding down from Philadelphia. Instead of knocking the traveling phans, they should be grateful for the added revenue.

    • natstowngreg - Aug 22, 2011 at 12:38 PM

      Oh, they’re grateful for the added revenue, all right. And goodness knows, they’re trying to sell more tickets to the locals. Over time, as the Nats get better, that will be easier. They could just do without some of the obnoxious behavior.

      I sat through the rain delays Friday amd Sunday, and left both games happy. Not so much in the misery of the Phillies fans, but because my team pulled off come-from-behind, walk-off victory. Twice.

      • Utley's Hair - Aug 22, 2011 at 1:17 PM

        Hey, Greg, has Zimmerman ever been plunked for that double shrug to the dugout thing he does after homering? (I’ve seen him do it a few times but don’t see Gnats enough games to notice if he does it every time.)

      • natstowngreg - Aug 22, 2011 at 6:49 PM

        Now that you mention it, he hasn’t. I suspect that, on the scale of offensive home run gestures, it doesn’t rank all that high.

        At the same time, Nats pitchers haven’t retaliated for all the times Michael Morse gets hit with inside fastballs. Not that they necessarily should, just saying.

  2. Chris Fiorentino - Aug 22, 2011 at 10:03 AM

    Craig, Davey is master troll to your master baiter.

    • delawarephilliesfan - Aug 22, 2011 at 3:16 PM


      Forget it Craig, you’ll never beat that one. Phillies fans have won!

  3. joshuavkidd - Aug 22, 2011 at 10:05 AM

    whatever keeps your spirits up Davey! Must be tough to deal with a team that stinks and a fan base that would rather go to the Dentist than pay to watch their home team play ball. I’d be a little more embarrassed that my stadiums largest crowd ever came from 90% of the away team.

    • ThatGuy - Aug 22, 2011 at 2:12 PM

      So your sayingn Phillies fans would rather go to a Philly game than get their teeth fixed if there is something wrong? Hmmm, those priorities may be a little skewed…

      • Utley's Hair - Aug 22, 2011 at 2:54 PM

        Now, if their were a dentist or two at the Bank, maybe we wouldn’t have to make such decisions…are you listening, David Montgomery? Make it happen and you’d be guaranteed of sellouts…oh, never mind….

  4. Andy Hoover - Aug 22, 2011 at 10:05 AM

    This is what passes as genius in baseball. Yes, when your team is one strike away from victory and the opponent hits a game tying home run, you have to sit back down. Duh.

    drmonkeyarmy is right. Were Phillies fans supposed to sit quietly when their team was one strike away from victory?

  5. halladaysbiceps - Aug 22, 2011 at 10:06 AM

    Davey Johnson said nothing inflammatory here. As a Phillies fan, his comments are fine. Phillies fans did their job by going into their stadium and showing support for the Phillies. The stadium was probably 2/3rd Phillies fans.

    • RedHeadedBastard - Aug 22, 2011 at 3:43 PM

      Its more like 90% Phillies, 10% Nationals. Well that is what it seemed like on Saturday night.

  6. Matt - Aug 22, 2011 at 10:07 AM

    Tolling Phils fans is far too easy…all you have to do is write an article about Brandon Inge hitting a HR in his first game back.

  7. Jonny 5 - Aug 22, 2011 at 10:08 AM

    It’s a very strange series in Washington when Philly comes to town. It’s like they are in Philly, I think they were around 44 – 45,000 in attendance for a couple games.

    My wife’s friend was down for the game and she said that Nationals staff handed her a “Citizens Bank south” sign to wave around and she was promptly put on television. So I figured I’d just let everyone know some of what you see with these signs is actually staged by the Nat’s themselves. For some unknown reason.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Aug 22, 2011 at 10:18 AM

      Tickets are tickets? While I’m sure it’d be nice if 44K Nats fans showed up, the owners won’t mind as long as 44K fans are there. Now if you see them start to sell Phillies gear in the stores, there’s a problem.

      • Jonny 5 - Aug 22, 2011 at 10:26 AM

        I was just wondering what the point of handing people signs was. I guess they think they might draw more Philly fans by making it look more inviting to them? Just a bit of a head scratcher for me.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 22, 2011 at 10:29 AM

        It’s all cyclical anyway, and I was saying to my wife yesterday that within 3 years, this will be a HUGE rivalry. The Nationals are a very good young team who, as I have said a bunch of times, are 11 games over .500 at home, which gives them the 4th best home record in the NL behind the Phils, Braves, and Brew Crew. So don’t take them lightly in their park.

        Of course, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the pissed off D-Backs go down there and sweep them the next 4.

      • natstowngreg - Aug 22, 2011 at 12:44 PM

        Last season, Stan Kasten invitied Phillies fans to come on down. He knew what he was doing, even though it ruffled some feathers down here.

        But selling Phillies stuff in the Nats team store? Nope. That is, as they say, a bridge too far. (Well, someone said that.)

      • Utley's Hair - Aug 22, 2011 at 1:20 PM

        The last few years, the Phightins have sent out emails a week or so prior to Phils series looking for Phans to head down to Citizens Nationals Bank Park in DC—presumably at the request of Nats ownership.

      • natstowngreg - Aug 22, 2011 at 6:51 PM

        Wouldn’t surprise me at all.

    • ditto65 - Aug 22, 2011 at 1:09 PM

      The sign does two things.
      1) Encourages more Sillies Phans to go down the DC.
      2) Angers Nats fans and motivates them to attend the games.

      Smart marketing, if you ask me.

      • professor59 - Aug 22, 2011 at 3:31 PM

        No question that the Nats front office considers Philadelphia part of their marketing area. They take what they can get.

      • natstowngreg - Aug 22, 2011 at 6:55 PM

        To be honest, inviting thousands of Phillies fans into our park, if anything, reduces Nats fans desire to attend games. Too much garbage to put up with. Winning more games wil change that.

      • kellyb9 - Aug 22, 2011 at 9:40 PM

        @natstowngreg – They aren’t drawing too well when they aren’t playing the Phillies.

  8. FC - Aug 22, 2011 at 10:32 AM

    Phillies fans know the feeling of being down on your last strike and tieing the game with a HR. Ref: Mayberry against Colorado. If the Nats are handing out signs they are just embracing the situation. After all it’s win-win for their organization!

  9. Mr. Jason "El Bravo" Heyward - Aug 22, 2011 at 10:39 AM

    The Phillies suck donkey scrote.

    • halladaysbiceps - Aug 22, 2011 at 10:46 AM

      Actually, the Phillies prefer bull scrote.

    • Utley's Hair - Aug 22, 2011 at 10:48 AM

      Wishful thinking on your part, Heyward….

  10. mattymac724 - Aug 22, 2011 at 10:40 AM

    With the win, the Nats pull to within 28 games. Good one, Davey.

    • natstowngreg - Aug 22, 2011 at 12:50 PM

      That’s 20 games behind, not 28. But it totally misses the point. The Nats have beaten the Fightins’ 5 of the last 7.

      Also, the Nats are 3 games under .500 — instead of 30 games under .500.

      It’s progress. Hopefully, further progress will be made next season, and the one after that, and…

      • Utley's Hair - Aug 22, 2011 at 1:13 PM

        He might have gotten the games behind info from the NBC Sports standings link, which—at the time but has been updated since—had last season’s final standings listed for some reason. The Gnats finished 2010 at 28 games behind the Phils.

    • mattymac724 - Aug 22, 2011 at 3:57 PM

      I did get it from the NBC site, my mistake…20 games

      • natstowngreg - Aug 22, 2011 at 6:57 PM

        No problem.

  11. philly56 - Aug 22, 2011 at 10:45 AM

    Nah. Let’s be honest here peole – rain taking out Worley and halladay beat the phillies. Plus, madson/bastardo had one blown save between opening day and last week – only a matter of time before that happened again.

  12. Utley's Hair - Aug 22, 2011 at 10:47 AM

    Meh…I doubt Davey thinks the Gnats can close a 20 game hole in the last 25 games? If they get within about 10 or 15, then I’ll be worried. He’s just flapping his gums like a manager trying to keep his baseball team relevant to sports fans as the NFL starts churning.

    And Craig, tell your guys at NBC that their standings are about 3 years too old—though, as a Phightins Phan, I liked 2008…for some reason. 😛

    • Utley's Hair - Aug 22, 2011 at 11:07 AM

      Of course, it would also help if I could add properly—but I blame that on a lack of coffee…and that I’m an idiot, I guess. —Sigh—

  13. pbsenerchia - Aug 22, 2011 at 11:02 AM


    • halladaysbiceps - Aug 22, 2011 at 11:13 AM

      “LOLPHILLIES?” Lots of love Phillies?

      • Utley's Hair - Aug 22, 2011 at 11:14 AM

        Absolutely. And shout it from the rooftops, too, apparently.

  14. everybodyhitswoohoo - Aug 22, 2011 at 11:15 AM

    Based on how excited Craig seemed about this on Twitter and at the beginning of this story, I was expecting a lot worse…

  15. test2402 - Aug 22, 2011 at 12:03 PM

    Back to philly with our 81 wins.

  16. tjv027 - Aug 22, 2011 at 12:09 PM

    As a Phillies fan, this doesn’t bother me one bit. It probably felt good to shut us up in your ballpark, regardless of how meaningless the win really is. Then again, until this squad finishes at least .500, I’m hardly concerned with what anyone wearing a Nationals cap says, good-natured or not.

  17. sgtr0c - Aug 22, 2011 at 12:10 PM

    That’s kinda funny, cause that what the Nats owners said to him after they counted the weekend revenues this morning.

  18. bdawk20 - Aug 22, 2011 at 1:33 PM

    This is a BAD reach Craig. Quotes of the day should be witty and/or smart. “You gotta sit back down” doesn’t fall under any of the above. This is like when you questioned if people were getting tired of the Phillies because a friend of a friend or something posted something negative about the Phillies near the beginning of the season. Stop reaching and make a good point when there is one to be made and people will respect you more.

  19. eagles512 - Aug 22, 2011 at 1:39 PM

    Saturday night was over 90% Phillies fans.

    • larryhockett - Aug 22, 2011 at 1:52 PM

      I was in DC for the weekend and it wasn’t just the stadium. The whole town was crawling with Phillies fans. Every Metro stop, every sidewalk, the museums, the zoo, everywhere you looked. Must’ve seen 1000 Phillies shirts or hats for every one Nationals. Never seen a phenomenon like this. Even the Yanks and Red Sox fans don’t travel the way Phillies fans do now.

      • kelsocarpenter - Aug 22, 2011 at 2:11 PM

        Can you blame them? The city of Philadelphia is terrible.

      • professor59 - Aug 22, 2011 at 3:35 PM

        Ouch. That really hurts, anonymous internet troll-person.

  20. delawarephilliesfan - Aug 22, 2011 at 3:23 PM

    I’m old enough to recall when the Vet was “Shea Stadium South”. I’ll never forget when the ’86 Mets came to town needing 1 win in a 3 game series to clinch the division. The Phils swept the Mets, who then went to St. Louis where they again failed to clinch.

    I’ve never forgotten that series, but somehow I doubt Davey looks at that ’86 World Series ring and looks back on that 3 game set in Philly.

    I am sure Nats fans will remember Davey’s quote (as will bald, geeky Braves fans). We will have much more to remember.

    Game Davey, Set and Match TBD, but it won’t be the Nat’s!

  21. pete8880 - Aug 22, 2011 at 4:22 PM

    Another great article by Clueless Craig! That crow is gonna taste really good in late October.

    • Utley's Hair - Aug 22, 2011 at 4:48 PM

      As a Phightins Phan, I don’t quite understand the part about eating crow. Craig has said countless times that the Phils will win the East, and probably will make it to the Series against that team from Boston, and stand a good chance to win it all.

  22. vicksprman - Aug 22, 2011 at 5:18 PM

    Oh man Davey Johnson hurt our feelings, LOL he must not have the standings board up in his office. The Nationals if they stay the course will be relevant sooner then later but until then shut up and take your wins where you can.

  23. Phillies Homer - Aug 22, 2011 at 6:06 PM

    I was there for Saturday’s game… Insane all the Phillies fans that were down there. I sat in front of 2 21 year old, Nats Fans, who were pretty cool. Had a bet everytime Jayson Werth came up on whether or not he would strike out (We owed them a lot of beer).

    But, what is lost in this Davey Johnson’s quote is the fact that he had to say it. Phillies fans drove in bunches to attend an away game to the point everyone knows Nats Stadium is Citizens Bank South. Hell even the middle of an inning entertainment was some guy dressed as a Phillies fan dancing around, until the Nats mascot put a screen over him and he came back out wearing a Nats uniform.

    It says a whole lot about a team when they can FILL an opponents stadium. The two kids I mentioned above said they’ve never seen it that bad.

  24. natstowngreg - Aug 22, 2011 at 7:04 PM

    Love to play with you guys some more, but work takes me to Seattle the rest of the week. I’d root for the Metsies to beat the crap out of the Fightins’ but I don’t like their fans, either.

  25. schmedley69 - Aug 22, 2011 at 8:34 PM

    Hey Davey, check out the standings. I believe that you are still 18 games out. This is not 1986. You are managing a crappy team in a crappy baseball town. You can sit back down come October and enjoy the playoffs from your couch.

    I was at the game Saturday night. Didn’t buy tickets ahead of time and was shocked to find that the game was sold out when I got there. Had to buy standing room tickets. By my estimation, it was 90% Phillies fans. Maybe even 95%. It’s amazing that the Phillies fans can sell out a road game when a lot of teams haven’t even sold out a home game this year.

    Over the course of a 162 game season you are going to have series like that. The Nats can trump their horns all that they want, but the fact of the matter is that the team sucks and they don’t have any fans. It will be interesting to see how well D.C. supports the Nats when/if they ever are a contender. My guess is that baseball won’t succeed there in the long run. There is a reason that it’s failed twice.

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