Hunter Pence Traded to the Philadelphia Phillies. Why I’m not sad…(anymore)

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July 31, 2011 by danolaurel

The Houston Astros announced the trade of RF Hunter Pence to the Phillies Friday evening during its game broadcast.

I thought I was going to be prepared. I was wrong———–

I joined Twitter (@danolaurel) because I wanted to follow my favorite players, get neat insider information about baseball, sports cards and to advertise various listing for my store front. I never knew how involved I would become during this season, more so in the midst of a hefty trade deadline.

Speculation began as soon as GM Ed Wade stated, “We will definitely be sellers at the trade deadline”.

I just assumed our poor pitchers would be gone.  Wandy and Brett have definitely performed at their highest levels.  How about Chris Johnson?  He’s definitely trying to find his groove.  Or even Michael Bourn; Someone who can bring us some valuable players to help offset our miserable decline this season.

Surely Ed Wade wouldn’t give up the FACE OF THE FRANCHISE!

—-   I dont remember specifically when I became a Hunter Pence fan, but I do remember cheering for him really early into his career.  I would yell out, “C’mon Round Rock!”  He was the first player I knew that had come up from the AAA Round Rock Express team. I was amazed by his abilities and his energy and I was hooked.

I started to get slightly worried a few days before the trade deadline when tweets first started to appear via twitter via reporters that I follow.  It had originally been thrown out there and then seemingly squashed once it got out that the Astros were looking for a lot in return.

My main comment was to say the Astros were just testing the market to see what kind of money they maybe could get, but didn’t really want to sell him.

Thursday night I began my nervousness.  More reports were coming out that it was down to Philly and Atlanta and one of those two teams made me start to believe that this could actually happen.  Little bit of history:  Current Astros GM Ed Wade came from the Philly organization, and was responsible for putting together the trade that sent Brad Lidge and most recently Roy Oswalt to the Philly organization.  I knew with that kind of history it would be hard to pass that up.

Then Friday evening, frantically checking my phone, there it was:

“Jon Heyman-looks like philly’s getting pence. singleton & cosart have been pulled. @Ken_Rosenthal says them and 2 others to houston. #tradedeadline

I was in the office and my heart just sank.  It was difficult because that was the player I was old enough to appriciate.  Don’t get me wrong, Ryan, Biggio, Bagwell, are still my favorites, but this guy was along side of me in a way.

I made sure that the game was being recorded so I could watch Hunter play his last game as an Astros.  When I came home I sat on the couch with a beer and turned on the game, fast-forwarding to the 5th inning. Watching him run back to the dugout from right-field, hugging his teammates, tears in his eyes. I couldn’t help but start balling.

I can only imagine what it was like to be a fan of let’s say, Reggie Jackson, Nolan Ryan, Joe Morgan, or anyone who inspired a community, a team and a guy who has always turned to baseball to get him through the doldrums that is life.

I was really upset throughout the day, but the more and more I continued to look into the situation it made sense.  The team is rebuilding.  I’m sick of hearing it, but it’s a fact.  They will lose more games this season than in franchise history.  They had pocket-aces and cashed it with what they could and when they could.  It was a good strategic move on Ed Wades part.

People will criticize, people will complain, but isn’t that just how it is now?  We received two AMAZING prospects in this deal including :Jonathan Singleton and SP Cosart.  Top 50 MLB prospects currently.  Thats a big deal for the Astros organization, so everyone else must take a deep-breath and relax.

Sure, there will be other Astros, and I will absolutely check into the Phillies now and see how they’re doing; I will definitely keep my Pence collection alive, but I will turn the page in my notebook and start a new page for his first of many Philadelphia Phillies cards.

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