Philadelphia Phillies fans remember the 2009 World Series for all of the wrong reasons.
The team failed in its attempt to win back-to-back championships and did so at the hands of the New York Yankees, who have since become absolute bitter rivals. Phillies fans remember the 2009 postseason as when it all started to go downhill, when the core of players assembled to win multiple world series championships fell short in the only other attempt they got.
And of course, the players and fans were plagued with what ifs. What if Pedro Martinez and Cole Hamels had pitched better? What if Brad Lidge hadn’t given up three runs in the ninth of that crucial Game 4? What if Ryan Howard had better offensive numbers?
All of those thoughts, as well as countless more, have probably at least crossed the minds of fans. One that probably didn’t though was this: what if Alex Rodriguez was using steroids during the 2009 season?
During an interview on MLB Network Radio, Johnny Damon, former teammate of Rodriguez, was asked if he thought the World Series ring he had from 2009 was at all tainted because of the talk surrounding A-Rod’s steroid use. Damon had this to say:
“I really haven’t sat down and thought that far, but if that’s how he was able to hit in the postseason, then yeah, absolutely … There’s just so many different factors that determine if a team wins, and A-Rod was a huge determining factor. He was the MVP of the ALCS. He played a pretty huge part.”
Damon makes a clear point about Rodriguez. He really was a huge deciding factor in that entire 2009 postseason, specifically the World Series. In six games, Rodriguez had his best World Series performance ever. He tallied five runs , six RBIs and three extra base hits. To put that into perspective, The Yankees outscored the Phillies in that series by just five runs, the same amount Rodriguez scored.
And before chalking this up to no big deal, keep in mind this is a city that still contends that the beloved Philadelphia Eagles would have won the 2005 Super Bowl if not for the New England Patriots and their cheating, spying ways. It was also in the 2009 season that saw Rodriguez having to answer questions about possible PED use.
For that reason alone, it is easy to see how fans will latch on to those numbers and Damon’s words and feel cheated. So whether Damon intended to stir the pot or not, his comments are certainly going to leave Phillies fans with at least one more “what if” concerning the 2009 postseason.