Thursday, April 9, 2009

LATEST SPORTS: World champion Phillies get their rings

Philadelphia Phillies Jimmy Rollins, left, and right fielder Jayson Werth, right, flash their World Series Champions to the fans during the ring presentation ceremony before the start of a baseball game with the Atlanta Braves, Wednesday, April 8, 2009, in Philadelphia.


The Philadelphia Phillies won the World Series last October and all the players could talk about was wearing that ring.

Most had seen one or two before on the hands of other players, but never on their own.

Finally – after months of secrecy – the Phillies got their rings in front of a sold-out crowd on Wednesday afternoon before the game against the Atlanta Braves.

The ring ceremony marked the culmination of the last year’s World Series championship and a few heroes – and goats – from last season’s team were back in the Citizens Bank Park.

Pat Burrell and Geoff Jenkins, both who are no longer with Philadelphia, received great ovations from the Phillies fans as they stood on the first-base foul line with their former teammates. However, pitcher Adam Eaton, who wasn’t even invited to the World Series celebration parade, was booed as he waved with both hands.

The small hiccup in the celebration couldn’t deter the players from enjoying a special moment. Veteran pitcher Jamie Moyer, 46, couldn’t take his eyes off the box that held his ring. He was the first to pull it out of the wooden box and wear the championship ring.

“I had no expectations of what this ring would look like,” said an emotional Moyer. “But really it would have exceeded any expectation I would have had. “

The design was held secret from everyone but the seven-person committee in charge of the designing the ring. The secret was unveiled today when last year’s general manger Pat Gillick received his ring.

The ring is adorned with 103 diamonds, symbolizing Philadelphia’s wins last season. Eleven of the diamonds are on the left side – along with the player’s last name – on the Liberty Bell, marking the 11 postseason wins it took to capture the World Series.

On the right side, the championship trophy rises out of Citizens Bank Park with 2008 on top, as a way to commemorate the fans’ support. There are two diamonds, one in each zero, signifying the championships in Phillies history.

The top is adorned with script P on top of a ruby inlay.

When asked for the price of each ring, Phillies senior vice president Jerry Clothier would only say: “Priceless.”


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