Can an athlete find peace in Philadelphia?

By Phil Sheridan

The Philadelphia Inquirer (MCT)

Published: Monday, Feb. 20 2012 6:20 p.m. MST

Rollins was the reigning National League MVP when he said that in August 2008. Two months later, he and his teammates delivered a World Series title. Some fans may never forgive those comments, but you can make an argument that by addressing the issue and making himself the lightning rod (there's that electricity metaphor again), Rollins defused the pressure and helped make that championship happen.

The Phillies went 7-0 at the Bank in the 2008 postseason. Their overall home record since Rollins touched the third rail: 165-100. That's a winning percentage of .623.

That tells you it is possible to win, even thrive, in front of Philadelphia fans. It helps to be a really good team, of course. But we've also seen good teams fold under pressure here; a couple of Eagles teams of the last decade come to mind.

It's a matter of players getting their own competitive heart beating in sync with the city's. Of course, that assumes the player has a competitive heart. If not, this is probably the wrong city for him, and peace is going to be very hard to find.

(c)2012 The Philadelphia Inquirer

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