In the last episode of “Striped,” a power struggle began between manager Charlie Manuel and shortstop Jimmy Rollins. And when did Charlie acquire an British accent? Meanwhile, Shane Victorino showed some shady colors while talking to Ben Francisco. And Ross Gload got upset about his troubled past. Confused? You won’t be after this episode of “Striped.”
Note: The following text is a satirical and fictional story based on the true outcomes of the regular season happenings of the 2010 Philadelphia Phillies. The text is to be considered as strictly entertainment.
Chapter One / Part One / Scene Two
May 19, 2010
The passionate fans in red bowed their heads in dissatisfaction once again, for the hometown nine lost another game. Despite a valiant effort from Japanese wunderkind Kylo Ken, the offense couldn’t muster an attack. This time, they couldn’t solve Tom Gorzelanny.
“A real comayadahocamorala,” says JC Romero, staring intently ahead with his hands clasped together. His brow sweaty, his eyes a sharp brown. “Ay fagayadaratolegama!”
“JC, my son, please,” says the priest at the altar, his call drenched in echo. Romero is alone in this great hall of a cathedral, highest of ceilings and brightest of walls. The sun bleeds into the pews, spotting Romero in a sea of gold. It’s a scene out of a mob movie; in a way, Romero is living this movie every day.
“As you know, my son,” says the priest, wiping a chalice, “I am most proud of your progress. You’re lucky to have moved clean from that lifestyle.”
“Not clean yet,” Romero whispers to himself, before saying a silent prayer and making his way out of the cathedral. Waiting for him is left-handed brother Antonio Bastardo, who gives him a loose man hug. Bastardo wears a long black coat and a large black hat and takes a long drag of a cigar. He resembles “Hawk” from “Spenser For Hire.”
“You ready, papi?” Bastardo asks.
Bastardo drives as the two sit in a powder blue low rider, hydraulics pumping to something from the Big Punisher canon. Could also be Paul Anka. Bastardo chews on the cigar as he lazily turns the wheel. Soon, they come to a stoplight by Citizens Bank Park when, to their side, pulls up another car: a filthy green minivan – maybe an Aerostar. With Cuban music blaring. The window rolls down.
“Que pasa, chicken shits!”
It’s Danys Baez and Jose Contreras. Baez is driving, tongue wagging. A noise is emanating from the passenger seat.
“Is Jose snoring?” Romero asks.
“Yeah, but he’s wide awake,” Baez responds. Contreras is, actually, wide awake, but hooked into a defibrillator. “So let’s race, bitches!”
They revv up their cars.
An hour later, everybody is in the locker room. Baez and Contreras are celebrating another victory – Baez by welcoming hookers into the clubhouse, Contreras by smiling while lying on a hospital bed arranged for him in the corner. Romero is icing down his arm, the victim of a powerful bruise.
“Why you gotta crash the car again?” Romero asks Bastardo.
“I’m sorry man!” he responds. “I’m still a rookie at this.”
With a quiet stride and wearing his garish robe, manager Charlie Manuel stops at Romero.
“I see that is a wicked bruise you have there,” Manuel says, bringing his robe to his face to cover his mouth. “Well tisk, tisk, young man, may you not enter the game today. And your chum Antonio there, if I call you in, may it be in an opportunity where you will ultimately fail. My good man Danys, how do you feel today?”
Baez is half naked, the hookers enjoying his svelte frame. “I feel great, skip!”
“Good then. You’re in if we need you. Quite.” Manuel stalks away, before noting: “Hello ladies.”
Before the day’s game against the Cubs, Manuel wrangles the players in a large circle in the middle of the clubhouse. Victorino hears his phone vibrating and nervously wiggles about, wanting to answer. Standing next to him is Ryan Howard, tapping his veins. Manuel starts a chant, and all the men except Jimmy Rollins chant along. Rollins, instead, mumbles “Red Bull” in the midst of the chant. Manuel sees this.
“Now then, Young James, what is the meaning of this charade?”
“What? What? I ain’t do nothin’.”
Manuel snarls, then continues the chant. Rollins mumbles “Red Bull” again.
“See, see, I heard that one,” Manuel says.
“What? What one?”
“If I recall correctly,” stammers Manuel, “I believe you said ‘Red Bull’.”
Alarms sound. The doors blast open and Rollins’ lackeys, clad in those black Red Bull polo shirts, break into the room with the Phillie Phanatic hot on their tails.
“Did someone say ‘Red Bull’?” they yell.
As they break in and dance like monkeys about the clubhouse, Dan Baker shouts, “Here come the Red Bulls!” The Phanatic cocks his giant hot dog shooter and blows Red Bulls onto the unsuspecting players. One hits Brad Lidge in the arm.
“Damn! Another Cortisone shot!”
Ryan Howard stalks away and quickly injects himself with a needle. Most of the players are confused, ducking the flurry of highly charged aluminum. Jamie Moyer zips up into a plastic bubble he created for himself. Jayson Werth catches a Red Bull without looking and stores it in his beard.
“Now then, what in Queen Elizabeth’s fluffy bosom is going on here?” screams Manuel.
“Trust me, brah! Trust me!” responds Rollins. He throws down a Red Bull. “GET THAT GET THAT!”
The commotion dies soon and the men dress for the afternoon game. Later that day, in the sixth inning, Rollins cranks a three-run home run, turning the game in favor of the Phillies. Angered by Rollins’ cool victory of sugary refreshment, Manuel leaves Joe Blanton into the game too long and then brings in Bastardo, just as he said he would. Bastardo promptly gives up the tying run and puts the game in jeopardy until an eighth-inning rush gives the Phillies the victory.
At the end of the day, Rollins celebrates by showering himself with a Red Bull. Silently in his office, adorned with pictures of Queen Elizabeth and maps of Olde England, Manuel watches over this grotesque display while stroking a stuffed kitty and sipping peppermint tea.
“If there’s one thing that makes my corneas itch,” Manuel ponders, “it’s watching another man usurp my authority.” He glances over the clubhouse and spots the Phanatic’s hot dog gun, left behind before the game. “Quite the situation here. A hot dog gun. … We’ll see who has the last delicious laugh. Ahahahaha!
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- Crashburn Alley
- High Cheese
- House That Glanville Built
- Philadelphia Will Do
- Philled In
- Philly Gameday
- Philly Gossip
- Phoul Ballz
- The Good Phight
- The Insider
- The Zo Zone
- Where's Weems?
- Who Does He Play For?
- Zoo With Roy