I still remember my first thoughts when I saw Pat for the first time wearing a Phillies uniform. “Wow, this guy is going to be a difference maker for us”… That he was indeed…
During his time in Philly, Burrell was always one of my favorite players. Granted, he had his slumps, but what player doesn’t, and I always knew that he would come out of it and murder a baseball, like he made a living doing while manning left field here.
It wasn’t always pretty, as his running motion (all movement and no forward progress) would bring a smile to my face even on the simplest of grounders. However, you could not fault him for not trying. Burrell had one of the strongest work ethics on the team and that was admirable in itself. He wasn’t the fastest player nor the best fielder, but he would always give it 100% every single time out there. At least, that’s how I perceived it.
Of course, there is the memorable scene of Burrell leading the World Series Championship parade down Broad Street. He was appropriately first in line leading our boys home on the greatest day of my life and was first in my heart for all those years.
Hats off to you Pat, thanks for everything! I look forward to your Phillies Wall-Of-Fame induction.