The Philadelphia Phillies clinched a return to the MLB postseason recently after a shaky start, and star shortstop Trea Turner praised the staff of a local sports talk radio show for the role he believes they played in the turnaround.
94WIP producer Jack Fritz posted a video to Twitter in early August in which he encouraged fans to give Turner a standing ovation at every at-bat during a home series against the Royals. “My boy is in his head, and he needs some support,” Fritz said.
After batting .247 through the first half of the season, Turner is hitting nearly .300 in the second half.
“My wife saw a video on social media about it and she showed me before I went to the stadium that day. So she was kind of where I heard it first,” Turner told Marks & Reese. “Obviously, the whole thing happened and the rest is kind of history. Started playing a lot better and it was thanks to you guys and the crowd.”
Trea Turner talks about the standing ovation: “I started playing a lot better and it was thanks to you guys and the crowd.”
— SPORTSRADIO 94WIP (@SportsRadioWIP) September 27, 2023
Now, Philadelphia is on a six-game win streak heading toward the end of the regular season and will host a National League Wild Card game next Tuesday.
Turner signed a massive 11-year contract with the Phillies in the offseason after an All-Star season in Los Angeles last year.
“My expectation of myself, how I played for a number of years now, I just want to do my job,” Turner said. “Those first 100 games or so, I wasn’t kind of living up to the standard that I played at for awhile and just wanted to get back to that. And then the next 35, 40 games have been pretty special.
“I think it’s probably the best I’ve hit in my life, just from a power standpoint really…As far as power and consistency it’s probably the best I’ve hit. It was a lot of fun.”
Did Fritz and the Marks & Reese crew really turn around Philadelphia’s season by getting its marquee signing back on track?
Too hard to tell.
But it’s a rare bit of positivity and support from sports media in an era where that is few and far between.