Playing in Series excites Moyer

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PHILADELPHIA --- Jamie Moyer remembers the delirious Phillies fans swaying from light poles, climbing trees, sitting on shoulders, doing anything they could to catch a glimpse of that 1980 World Series parade.

Moyer was just a teen who played hooky from school in nearby Souderton and waited inside now-defunct JFK Stadium for the victory parade to end. Mike Schmidt and Larry Bowa spoke at the rally, all while the crazed fans chanted "We're No. 1!" and celebrated Philadelphia's first World Series championship in team history.

This year, Moyer wants to ride one of those floats down Broad Street instead of watching them go by.

Moyer and the Phillies are four wins away from championship No. 2 in the team's 126-year history. If anyone can relate to Phillies fans' lengthy drought, it's the 45-year-old Moyer.

The two-time 20-game winner has never pitched in a World Series, and the first one of his 22-year career will come for his hometown team. His parents, other family and friends from around the area will be in their seats Saturday at Citizens Bank Park to cheer him on.

"It's really nice to have this experience and have it in Philadelphia," Moyer said.

Moyer is scheduled to start Game 3 of the World Series against either Tampa Bay or Boston. He can only hope the outing goes better than his first two of the playoffs. Moyer, who was 16-7 with a 3.71 ERA during the regular season, is 0-2 with a 13.50 ERA.

He was chased in Game 3 of the NLCS against the Dodgers after allowing six runs in 1q innings. Moyer never found any consistency in his lone start of the division series against Milwaukee and was lifted after only four innings.

Moyer has the only two losses for Philadelphia in the playoffs.

"This is the only thing I can take out of it: the pitches I made, they hit. The better pitches I made, which weren't many, they hit. The poor pitches I made, they hit," Moyer said. "I picked the wrong time to do it, but my teammates picked me up. We won two series and we're here."

Before the Phillies clinched the NLCS in five games, there was plenty of buzz in Philadelphia that they shouldn't pitch Moyer in a possible Game 7.

Manager Charlie Manuel was peeved Saturday by questions that Moyer might not keep his turn in the rotation for the World Series. Manuel is staunchly loyal to his veterans, especially pitchers with 246 career wins and a track record like Moyer's.

Moyer will get the ball. Case closed.

"Moyer won a lot of games for us this year. He's one of the reasons why we are where we're at," Manuel said. "He'll pitch against whoever we play."


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