Ryan Howard

Ryan James Howard (born November 19, 1979), nicknamed "The Big Piece", is an American former professional baseball first baseman. Howard spent his entire Major League Baseball (MLB) career playing for the Philadelphia Phillies, from 2004 to 2016. He is known for being the fastest player in baseball history to reach 1,000 RBIs, 100 home runs, and 200 home runs. Howard also holds numerous Phillies franchise records.

Howard made his MLB debut in 2004. He won the National League (NL) Rookie of the Year Award in 2005 and the NL Most Valuable Player (MVP) Award in 2006. Howard was a three-time NL All-Star (2006, 2009, 2010), and won the Silver Slugger Award, Hank Aaron Award, and the NL Championship Series MVP Award in 2009. Known for his power, Howard is a member of the 50 home run club. He was a two-time NL home run champion (2006, 2008), and became the fastest player to reach both the 100 and 200 home run milestones in MLB history, passing the marks in 2007 and 2009, respectively. He is also tied with Sammy Sosa for the most National League 140 RBI seasons at 3 and the most National League 130 RBI seasons at 4.[1] However, Howard is Major League Baseball’s (ignominious) all-time record-holder for most lifetime Golden Sombrero awards.

Ryan Howard
Ryan Howard (18689970748)
Howard with the Phillies in 2015
First baseman
Born: November 19, 1979 (age 39)
St. Louis, Missouri
Batted: Left Threw: Left
MLB debut
September 1, 2004, for the Philadelphia Phillies
Last MLB appearance
October 2, 2016, for the Philadelphia Phillies
MLB statistics
Batting average.258
Home runs382
Runs batted in1,194
Teams
Career highlights and awards

Amateur career

Howard was born in St. Louis. He attended Lafayette High School in Wildwood, Missouri, and Missouri State University, where he played college baseball for the Bears from 1998 to 2001. Howard finished his collegiate career with 50 home runs, 183 runs batted in (RBIs), and a .335 career batting average in 172 games played. He was the 1999 Missouri Valley Conference Freshman of the Year. Missouri State retired Howard's number on December 18, 2010. He played one summer in the Central Illinois Collegiate League, a league partially funded by Major League Baseball (MLB) for future prospects to develop.[2]

Professional career

Minor leagues

The Philadelphia Phillies selected Howard in the fifth round of the 2001 draft and assigned him to the Batavia Muckdogs of the NY-Penn League. Howard ascended the Phillies' minor league system, earning consecutive awards in the Florida State League and Eastern League leagues in 2003 and 2004, respectively. Howard also set the single-season home run record for the Reading Phillies, with 37 in 102 games.[3][4] On July 31, he was promoted to the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Red Barons of the Class AAA International League.[4] He became just the fifth minor league player since 1956 to hit at least 46 home runs. He was named by Major League Baseball one of the best first basemen in Philadelphia Phillies History.[4] Howard won the Joe Bauman Home Run Award in the process.[5] While doing this, he impressed scouts enough that general managers of several teams tried to lure the Phillies' Ed Wade into trading him, as Jim Thome was blocking his path to the majors.

Philadelphia Phillies

2004 – September call-up

On September 1, Howard made his first Major League plate appearance, striking out against Jaret Wright in a pinch-hit at-bat (for Vicente Padilla) in a 7–2 loss to the Atlanta Braves. On September 6, Howard logged his first Major League hit in a single at-bat during a 3–1 loss to the Braves; on September 8, he recorded his first multi-hit game with a double and a single in a 4–1 win over the Braves. On September 11, Howard hit his first Major League home run off Bartolomé Fortunato, driving in his first RBI and scoring his first run in an 11–9 win over the New York Mets.

Howard had 42 plate appearances in 19 games with the Phillies in 2004. He posted a .282 batting average with two home runs and five RBI; he also hit five doubles, drew two walks, and was hit by a pitch. Between playing for the Double-A Reading Phillies, Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Red Barons and the Philadelphia Phillies, Howard hit 48 home runs, which was tied for the highest total in organized baseball in 2004, along with Adrián Beltré of the Los Angeles Dodgers.[4]

2005 – Rookie of the Year

On May 15, Howard recorded his first three-hit game, going 3-for-4 with a double, two singles, and a run-scored in a 4–3 win over the Cincinnati Reds. On July 3, Howard recorded his first three-RBI game, against the Braves. On August 23, he notched his first four-hit game, going 4-for-5 with a double, a home run, two singles, three RBI and three runs scored in a 10–2 win over the San Francisco Giants. On July 1, Howard became the Phillies' everyday first baseman when Thome was sidelined for the season with an elbow injury.[6]

Howard was named National League (NL) Rookie of the Month in September. He batted .278 with 10 home runs and 22 runs batted in. In honor of winning the award, he received a specially-designed trophy.[7]

Howard led all major league rookies with 22 home runs[6] and posted a .288 average and 63 RBI in just 312 at-bats and 88 games. He hit 11 home runs and 27 RBI in September and October. Howard finished his rookie season with 17 doubles, two triples, 52 runs scored, and 100 strikeouts and 63 runs batted in as the Phillies battled the Houston Astros for the NL wild card until getting eliminated on the last day of the season. Howard was rewarded for his effort by being named NL Rookie of the Year, the fourth Phillie to win the award.[6] He was also voted the Baseball Prospectus Internet Baseball Awards NL Rookie of the Year and received the NLBM Larry Doby Legacy Award (NL Rookie of the Year).

After the 2005 season, the Phillies faced a dilemma involving Thome and Howard. Both were very talented and proven power hitters; Thome was the biggest free agent player the Phillies signed prior to the 2003 season, but Howard was the reigning Rookie of the Year and a promising young player. Before the 2006 season, the Phillies traded Thome for outfielder Aaron Rowand and minor league pitching prospects Gio González and Daniel Haigwood in order to make room for Howard.[8]

2006 – MVP season

Howard Stance
An example of Howard's signature stance before taking a pitch.

Howard began the 2006 season as the Phillies' starting first baseman. Howard hit his first home run of the season on April 3, off the Cardinals' Chris Carpenter.[9] On April 23, Howard became the first player to hit a home run into Ashburn Alley at Citizens Bank Park. The home run traveled 496 feet (151 m) and was hit off Sergio Mitre of the Florida Marlins. It was the first of two Howard hit in the game, the first multi-home run game of his career.[10] From May 20 to 29, Howard had at least one RBI in nine consecutive games. During that stretch, Howard hit six home runs and drove in 17 runs. He also became the first player to hit a home run into the third deck of the park in right field when he connected off Mike Mussina on June 20, a 437-foot (133 m) long-ball that was again his first of two home runs.[11] To honor the home run, the Phillies painted a white H on the seat where the ball was caught.[11] Howard collected seven RBI on the two home runs and a triple in the 9–7 loss, becoming the first Phillies batter to drive in seven runs since pitcher Robert Person on June 2, 2002.[12][13]

Howard was named to his first All-Star game at PNC Park in Pittsburgh as a reserve first baseman, by the player ballot. He participated in the Century 21 Home Run Derby prior to the game, and won the contest with a total of 23 home runs, defeating the New York Mets' third baseman David Wright in the final round. Howard was the second consecutive Phillie to win the Derby, with Bobby Abreu hitting a record 41 home runs in 2005. Howard went 0 for 1 with a groundout in the All Star Game. On July 30, against the Marlins, Howard tied a Major League record by walking five times, including an intentional walk in the eighth inning.

From August 25 to 29, Howard hit home runs in four consecutive games; on the 29th, Howard hit his 48th home run of the season to tie Mike Schmidt for the Phillies single-season record.[14] On August 31, Howard hit a home run into the upper deck of RFK Stadium to surpass Schmidt as the Phillies' single-season home run record holder.[15]

On September 3, Howard went 4-for-4 with three home runs and a double in an 8–7 win over the Atlanta Braves, to become the first Philadelphia Phillies batter and the 24th player in Major League history to hit 50 home runs in a season. Howard became the first player to reach 50 home runs in a season since Andruw Jones, who hit 51 home runs the previous year. Reaching 52 home runs in the game, Howard also broke Ralph Kiner's 1947 record for home runs in a sophomore season, becoming just the second batter to hit 50 home runs in a second season. Howard's performance from August 28 to September 3 earned him NL Player of the Week. During that span, Howard batted .571 with six home runs and 12 runs batted in. On September 5, Howard was named the NL Player of the Month for August. His 41 runs batted in were the most any player had in one month since Frank Howard had 41 in July 1962. With 14 home runs, he also set new franchise records for both statistics in the month of August. On September 22, Howard became the 8th player in history to hit 58 home runs in a season, belting a three-run round-tripper off Marlins pitcher Ricky Nolasco. On September 22, Howard became the first hitter to drive in 140 runs since David Ortiz in 2005. On September 27, in a game against the Nationals, Howard walked for the 100th time in the ninth inning. He was also be walked intentionally in the eleventh and thirteenth inning. Howard became the first Phillies' batter to walk 100 or more times since Thome in 2004.

Howard finished the 2006 season with a .313 batting average, 58 home runs, and 149 runs batted in. He also set the Phillies' franchise record with 37 intentional walks. Howard and Ortiz were the only hitters to hit 50 or more home runs that season. Howard's 58 home runs was the most by a player in his sophomore season. In the process, Howard became the first Phillies' batter to win the home run title since Jim Thome did it in 2003.

On October 2, Howard was named the NL Player of the Month for September. Howard, who also won the award in August, became the first player since Albert Pujols in May and June 2003, to win the award back-to-back.

On October 10, Howard was named The Sporting News 2006 Player of the Year. On October 25, Howard was awarded the 2006 NL Hank Aaron Award.

On November 8, Howard was named by his fellow major league players as the Player of the Year and the National League Outstanding Position Player in the 2006 Players Choice Awards balloting. He succeeded Atlanta Braves outfielder Andruw Jones, the 2005 winner of both awards. On the same day, following a 5–3 win over Nippon Professional Baseball that capped a five-game international sweep by the MLB in the Major League Baseball Japan All-Star Series, Howard was named the Series MVP; he hit .558 with eight runs, three doubles, four homers and eight RBI. On November 10, Howard was awarded the National League Silver Slugger Award at first base.

On November 20, Howard won the National League MVP award, and became one of four players in baseball history to win the Rookie of the Year and MVP awards in consecutive seasons, joining Cal Ripken, Jr and later joined by Dustin Pedroia and Kris Bryant.

Howard received the Babe Ruth Home Run Award for leading MLB in home runs.[16] He also received the Pride of Philadelphia Award from the Philadelphia Sports Hall of Fame.

Howard received the NLBM Oscar Charleston Legacy Award (NL MVP) and the NLBM Josh Gibson Legacy Award (NL home-run leader).

The Philadelphia Baseball Writers' Association of America awarded him the third annual Mike Schmidt Most Valuable Player honor.[17]

2007

On March 2, 2007, the Phillies renewed Howard's contract in a one-year deal for $900,000, the highest salary ever offered to a player not eligible for salary arbitration.[18]

On May 9, Howard hit his fourth career grand slam, against Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Brandon Medders, when he came into the game as a pinch hitter for Wes Helms. On May 13, Howard was placed on the disabled list with a left quadriceps strain after missing five straight games. Howard fielded grounders for about 45 minutes before the Phillies game with the Toronto Blue Jays on May 20. Howard returned to the lineup on May 25, after a rehabilitation assignment with the class A Lakewood team as a designated hitter. He hit a home run in his first at-bat there. On May 27, he hit two home runs in a win that helped the Phillies sweep the Braves.

On June 27, Howard hit a 461-foot (141 m) home run,[19] and became the fastest player in Major League Baseball history to hit 100 home runs.[20] The accomplishment was achieved in only 325 games, 60 games fewer than the 385 games that Ralph Kiner needed to hit his first 100 home runs from 1946 to 1948.

Though Howard did not compete in the 2007 MLB All-Star Game, he was chosen to compete in the 2007 Major League Baseball Home Run Derby for the second straight year in order to defend his title. However, Howard only hit three home runs in the first round and did not advance.

After coming back from the DL, Howard had a "power surge", as he quickly climbed to second on the home run leaders list in the National League. On July 25, Howard hit a walk-off home run in the 14th inning to give the Phillies a victory over the Washington Nationals.

Howard had his first career stolen base on August 21, 2007, vs. the Los Angeles Dodgers.

On September 17, Howard hit two home runs, which gave him his 39th and 40th home run of the season.

On September 27, Howard established a new major league record by striking out for his 196th and 197th time, breaking the old record of 195 (he tied it on September 23), set by Adam Dunn in 2004.[21] He ended the season with 199 strikeouts, striking out an NL-highest 37.6% of the time.[22]

Howard's final 2007 season totals were a .268 average, with 47 home runs and 136 runs batted in, helping the Phillies win the National League East title on the final day of the season to earn their first postseason berth since the 1993 World Series. The Phillies were swept by the Colorado Rockies (who had won a one-game playoff against the San Diego Padres for the NL Wild Card) in the 2007 National League Division Series; Howard homered off Jeremy Affeldt in Game Two, but struck out seven times in his other 11 at-bats.

2008

Ryan Howard3
Howard swinging at a pitch

On February 21, 2008, Howard won an arbitration case against the Phillies, and was awarded $10 million, the most ever for a victorious player and tied for the most ever awarded. The Phillies had offered $7 million to Howard in salary.[23]

Howard began the 2008 season in a slump, finishing the month of April with a batting average of just .172 and going 2-for-25 to close out the month. He fared better in May, averaging .238 with ten home runs and 30 RBI for the month, and finishing out May just north of the Mendoza Line with an overall batting average of .205. Howard hit his 15th home run of the season in a 7–3 loss to the Florida Marlins on May 30, and teammate Chase Utley hit his 15th homer on May 25. The two became the first pair of Phillies to hit 15 home runs each before June.[24]

On June 13, Howard hit two home runs and had five RBI, in a 20–2 win over the St. Louis Cardinals. This included the second of a first-inning set of back-to-back-to-back Philadelphia home runs. It was the seventh time that the Phillies had hit three consecutive home runs, the first since May 18, 2004,[25] and the fourth occurrence by any team in the 2008 Major League Baseball season.[26][27][28] On June 16, Howard again hit two home runs and drove in four in an 8–2 win over the Boston Red Sox for his 15th career multi-homer game; the four-day span between multi-homer games was the shortest of his career.[29] In stark contrast, Howard went 0-for-4 the next night with four strike outs in a 3–0 loss for his tenth career golden sombrero.[30] Howard drove in his 100th run of the 2008 season on August 11, against the Los Angeles Dodgers, marking his third consecutive season with at least 100 RBI.[31]

Howard finished the 2008 season with 146 RBI and a .251 batting average. His contributions again helped lead the Phillies to the division title and the post-season. Against Milwaukee in the first round he batted a mere .182 and only drove in one run. Things picked up as he delivered with a .300 batting average against the Dodgers in the next round, although he only delivered two RBI and still remained in his home run drought in the post-season. However, as the Phillies advanced to the World Series he finally started delivering significantly with six RBI, .286 batting average, and three home runs (which tied Donn Clendenon's 1969 World Series record for most home runs in a five-game Series)[32] – two of which came in game 4 (in which he also drove in five runs) as the Phillies took a commanding 3–1 series lead. The Phillies eventually won the series in five games to bring the Phillies their first World Series championship since 1980, and Philadelphia their first major sports championship since 1983; he finished second in the voting for the 2008 NL MVP award, behind Albert Pujols of the St. Louis Cardinals.[33] Howard won his second Babe Ruth Home Run Award and his second Josh Gibson Legacy Award, leading MLB with 48 home runs.[34][35]

2009

Prince Fielder Ryan Howard Barack Obama
Barack Obama talks with Howard and Prince Fielder (left), before the start of the MLB All-Star Game.

On February 8, the Phillies and Howard agreed on a 3-year, $54 million contract that bought out his remaining three years of salary arbitration eligibility.[36] In spring training, Howard led all players in home runs, with 10.[37]

On May 4, Howard hit his second grand slam of the year, the seventh in his career, against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium.[38] On May 30, he hit his third grand slam of the season off of Washington Nationals pitcher Shairon Martis. The grand slam landed in the third deck in the first row above the Powerade sign in right field at Citizens Bank Park, and was estimated at 475 feet (145 m). The grand slam put Howard ahead of Mike Schmidt, who had 7 grand slams in his career, putting him first all-time in Phillies franchise history.[39]

Howard was named to the 2009 National League All-Star team and also competed in the Home Run Derby.[40]

On June 20, Howard was checked into the hospital early that morning with a 104 degree fever, but pinch-hit later that day, hitting a home run.[41] A month later, against the Florida Marlins on July 16, Howard hit his 200th career home run, making him the fastest player ever to that mark. It took Howard 658 games to reach 200 long-balls, beating out the previous titleholder, Ralph Kiner (706 games).[42]

In August, Howard hit 11 home runs with 33 runs batted in, after just six the month before. On August 24, in a game against the New York Mets, Howard went 2 for 5 with 2 home runs and 5 runs batted in. Howard also recorded his 100th runs batted in of the season. This marked the fourth consecutive season that Howard had reached the 100 runs batted in mark. His batting average in the month was .299, raising his overall average to .275. He was named the NL Player of the Month for these achievements. Howard was named NL Player of the Week on August 31. Howard hit 5 home runs, 12 runs batted in, 28 total bases, and a 1,000 slugging percentage during that stretch. On September 18, in a game against the Braves, Howard hit his 39th and 40th home run of the season. This marked the fourth time in his career that he had hit 40 or more home runs in a season. On October 3, Howard hit his 45th home run of the season and became only the fourth player in Major League Baseball history (joining Babe Ruth from 1926–1931, Ken Griffey Jr. from 1996–1999,[43] and Sammy Sosa from 1998–2001) to amass at least 135 RBI and 45 home runs in four consecutive seasons.[44]

Howard ended the season tied with Milwaukee Brewers first baseman Prince Fielder for the major league lead in RBI with 141.

In the 2009 National League Division Series (NLDS) against the Colorado Rockies, Howard hit a game-tying double with two outs in the top of the ninth off of closer Huston Street. Howard scored the winning run on a Jayson Werth single. After tying Lou Gehrig's record for the most consecutive postseason games with an RBI, Howard won the NLCS MVP award on October 21.[45] However, Howard struggled against the New York Yankees during the 2009 World Series, surpassing Willie Wilson's record by striking out 13 times in the series.[46]

2010

Ryan Howard Injured his ankle
Howard injured his ankle on August 1, 2010.

On April 26, 2010, Howard signed a 5-year, $125 million extension with a club option to the contract he inked before the 2009 season.[47] He was also the first designated hitter in a NL ballpark during a regular-season game when the Phillies played as the road team against the Toronto Blue Jays in Citizens Bank Park on June 25. Major League Baseball moved the interleague series to Philadelphia due to the G-20 Summit taking place near the Rogers Centre in Toronto.[48]

On August 1, Howard sprained his ankle while returning to second base on a baserunning play, and was placed on the 15-day disabled list.[49]

On August 24, Howard was ejected in the 14th inning by 3rd base umpire Scott Barry for arguing a check swing strikeout. With no position players left the Phillies had to use a pitcher to replace Howard.

On September 8, Howard hit his 250th home run in only 855 games,[50] which surpassed Ralph Kiner as the quickest player in history to reach that milestone.

On September 18, Howard hit his 30th homer of the season, setting a franchise record with five consecutive 30-homer, 100-RBI seasons. He had been tied with Chuck Klein, who had four consecutive 30-homer, 100-RBI seasons from 1929 to 1932.[51] On defense, he led all major league first basemen in errors for the third year in a row, with 14.[52]

Howard was listed with teammates Chase Utley, Jamie Moyer, and Roy Halladay as one of the few active players that is likely to be considered for the Hall of Fame.[53]

2011

Ryan Howard at bat
Howard at bat during a Phillies game

Through 2011, Howard was fourth among all active major leaguers in career slugging percentage (.560; behind Albert Pujols, Alex Rodriguez and Ryan Braun), and ninth in career intentional walks. During the 2011 season, Howard had a batting average of .253, 33 home runs and 116 RBI. It was his sixth consecutive 30 home run and 100 RBI season, a Phillies franchise record.

In Game 5 of the 2011 NLDS vs the St. Louis Cardinals, Howard was the last batter to ground out before the Phillies lost the series. Howard tore his Achilles tendon when running to first base on the final play of the game, a ground out to the second baseman, Nick Punto. His injury required surgery and as a result, he missed the start of the 2012 season.[54]

2012

Howard began the 2012 season on the 15-Day DL. He said in a podcast in early June that his Achilles tendon injury is "progressing at a positive pace".

On July 6, 2012, Howard was activated for his first game of the 2012 season, in which he went 2-for-4 with a double in a 5-0 Phillies loss. Howard hit his 300th career home run on September 22; his season ended one week later on September 29 after suffering a small fracture in his big right toe. He finished the 2012 season with a .219 batting average, 14 home runs, and 56 RBI in 71 games.

2013

On July 8, 2013, Howard went on the disabled list, missing 6–8 weeks with a torn left meniscus. He underwent arthroscopic surgery to repair the tear and did not play for the remainder of the season. He was hitting .266, with 11 home runs and 43 RBI, at the time of his injury.[55]

Ryan Howard relaxes before pitch
Howard demonstrates his signature relaxing stance prior to batting in a game on August 22, 2014

2014

Howard entered the 2014 season feeling rejuvenated, and looking to utilize the whole field, rather than exclusively pull the ball, as he had done in recent years.[56] After reaching base in his first three at bats on opening day,[57] Howard batted in the fifth position in the Phillies' second game during which they faced a left-handed pitcher; it ended a streak of 665 starts for Howard in which he batted in the fourth position.[58]

On May 31, Howard hit a three-run home run for the 1,000th RBI of his career in an eventual loss to the New York Mets. Howard became the fastest player in MLB history to 1,000 RBI, accomplishing the feat in only 1,230 games.[59] In 153 games of the 2014 year, Howard struck out an MLB-leading 190 times while batting .223 with 23 home runs and 95 RBI.[60]

2015

In 2015, Howard batted merely .229, and his 23 HR, 77 RBI and 138 strikeouts led the last-placed Phillies, even though he missed the last three weeks of the season due to a left knee injury.[61] He had the lowest batting average against left-handers among all MLB hitters (60 or more plate appearances), at .130.[62]

2016

Stephen Piscotty and Ryan Howard on May 2, 2016
Howard holding Cardinals outfielder Stephen Piscotty in 2016

Howard began the 2016 season with a protracted slump; by late May, with his batting average at .161 after 39 games and with the arrival of a young promising first baseman in Tommy Joseph, baseball pundits asserted that the Phillies should consider simply releasing Howard and let the 36-year-old retire.[63][64] On June 1, manager Pete Mackanin announced his plans to keep Howard on the bench so as to give Joseph, a rookie, more playing time at first base.[65] Howard hit his 375th home run on August 16, 2016, versus the Dodgers. In 112 games of 2016, Howard finished with a .196 batting average, 25 home runs, and 59 RBI. On November 2, the Phillies declined the option for Howard that had a $23 million deal for the upcoming season, making him a free agent for the first time of his career.[66]

Atlanta Braves and Colorado Rockies

On April 6, 2017, Howard signed with the Atlanta Braves in a minor-league contract. Howard started with Braves extended spring training in Florida before he was assigned to the Gwinnett Braves of the International League. If he was added to the 40-man roster, he would have received a $120,000 minor-league salary or a $750,000 major-league salary, plus potential bonuses based on plate appearances.[67] Braves general manager John Coppolella explained that Howard's signing was "just a no-risk proposition for a player with good makeup who was excellent in the second half last season, he's in good shape and has been training and waiting for an opportunity."[68] However, he hit just .184 with one home run and 11 strikeouts in 42 plate appearances for Gwinnett, and was released on May 8.[69]

On August 12, 2017, Howard agreed to a minor league contract with the Colorado Rockies and was assigned to the Triple-A Albuquerque Isotopes.[70] He elected free agency on November 6, 2017. On September 4, 2018, Howard announced his retirement[71] by publishing an article on The Players' Tribune.[72]

Broadcasting

In February 2019, Howard joined ESPN as an analyst for Baseball Tonight.[73]

Personal life

Howard has a fraternal twin brother named Corey,[74] as well as an older brother and a sister. He says he is the smallest of the Howard sons. His favorite baseball team growing up was the St. Louis Cardinals. Howard has a son named Darian Alexander, who was born January 26, 2001.[75] Howard graduated from Lafayette High School (Wildwood, St. Louis County, Mo.) in 1998, where he played trombone. While attending Missouri State University he became a member of Phi Beta Sigma fraternity and his line name was "Blue Hurt". Howard is a representative for a number of products including Under Armour.[76] He also appeared on the cover of MLB 08: The Show.[77]

Howard appeared alongside teammate Chase Utley as himself on the 2010 episode of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia "The Gang Gets Stranded in the Woods". He also appeared as himself during the 7th season of Entourage in the episode "Lose Yourself" and appeared in the final season of The Office; set in Scranton and created during his time in Triple-A there. Howard is the acknowledged namesake of one of the show's characters, who in one episode claimed to be "Ryan Howard, the baseball player" in an attempt to gain entry into a New York nightclub.

Howard married former Philadelphia Eagles cheerleader Krystle Campbell in Maui on December 1, 2012.[78][79]

A longstanding lawsuit between Howard and his family over finances was settled in November 2014.[80]

In May 2017, Howard announced his new role as Partner at SeventySix Capital, a Philadelphia-based venture capital firm led by Wayne Kimmel and Jon Powell.[81]

The sale of Howard's palatial beachfront mansion in Belleair Shore, Florida, for $16.5 million was announced on January 30, 2019.[82]

On April 6, 2019, Howard announced he and his wife are expecting a girl. [83]

Novels

Howard has written six children's books with co-authors Erwin Madrid and his wife, Krystle Howard, published by Scholastic.[84]

Al Jazeera controversy

On January 5, 2016, it was announced that Howard had filed a lawsuit suing Al Jazeera for defamation following the publication's release of the documentary "The Dark Side: Secrets of the Sports Dopers", which linked Howard and Washington Nationals infielder Ryan Zimmerman, among others, to a clinic that allegedly distributed steroids and HGH. Zimmerman also filed suit against Al Jazeera for defamation.[85]

Major league and franchise records

Record Total Season(s) Surpassing Date
Home runs by a Phillies batter, single season 58 2006 Mike Schmidt, 48 (1980) 49th on August 31, 2006
Home runs in a sophomore season 58 2006 Ralph Kiner, 51 (1947) 52nd on September 3, 2006
Intentional walks to a Phillies batter 37 2006 Jim Thome, 26 (2004) 27th on September 13, 2006
Fewest games for 100 home runs 325 2004–2007 Ralph Kiner, 385 (1946–1948) 100th on June 27, 2007
Home runs in first 1,000 career at-bats 85 2004–2007 Cecil Fielder, 76 (1985–1990) 77th on September 24, 2007
Fewest games for 150 home runs 495 2004–2008 Eddie Mathews, 569 (1952–1955) 150th on July 2, 2008
Strikeouts by a Phillies batter 199 2008 tied himself (2007) 199th on September 27, 2008
Career grand slams by a Phillies batter 15 2004–2016 Mike Schmidt, 7 (1972–1989) 8th on May 30, 2009
Fewest games for 200 home runs 658 2004–2009 Ralph Kiner, 706 (1946–1950) 200th on July 16, 2009 [42]
At least one RBI in consecutive postseason games in the same year 7 2009 Iván Rodríguez (2003)
Bernie Williams (1999) (6 all)
Carlton Fisk (1975)
October 18, 2009[86]
At least one RBI in consecutive postseason games 8 2009 tied, Lou Gehrig (1928 and 1932) October 19, 2009[87]
Most strikeouts in a World Series 13 2009 Willie Wilson, 12 (1980) November 4, 2009
Fewest games for 250 home runs 855 2004–2010 Ralph Kiner, 871 (1946–1951) 250th on September 8, 2010 [88]
Most career home runs by a player whose last name begins with H 382 2004-2016 tied, Frank Howard 382nd on September 30, 2016 [89]
Most career Golden sombreros – games with at least four strikeouts 27 2006–2015 Reggie Jackson, 23 24th on May 29, 2014 [90][91]

See also

References

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  2. ^ "Ryan Howard Returns to Campus Saturday for Jersey Retirement Ceremony". December 15, 2010. Archived from the original on July 27, 2011. Retrieved March 2, 2014.
  3. ^ "Big Phils World Series run started in Reading 10 seasons ago". Official site of the Double-A affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies. October 16, 2008. Archived from the original on April 20, 2009. Retrieved July 17, 2009.
  4. ^ a b c d "Howard named Eastern League MVP". MLB.com. September 30, 2004. Archived from the original on October 12, 2012. Retrieved September 11, 2009.
  5. ^ "Phillies' Ryan Howard Round-Tripper Contest Winner – OurSports Central – Independent and Minor League Sports News". OurSports Central. September 17, 2004. Retrieved September 14, 2011.
  6. ^ a b c "Street wins AL Rookie of Year; Howard wins NL". ESPN.com. Associated Press. November 5, 2005. Archived from the original on February 14, 2009. Retrieved July 17, 2009.
  7. ^ "Howard voted National League Rookie of the Month". MLB.com. October 3, 2012. Archived from the original on November 10, 2012. Retrieved May 18, 2013.
  8. ^ "White Sox send Rowand to Phils for Thome". ESPN.com. November 25, 2005. Retrieved July 8, 2009.
  9. ^ "Ryan Howard Career Home Runs". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved December 23, 2015.
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External links

2006 Major League Baseball season

The 2006 Major League Baseball season ended with the National League's St. Louis Cardinals winning the World Series with the lowest regular season victory total in a non-strike season in history. The American League continued its domination at the All-Star Game by winning its fourth straight game; the A.L. has won nine of the last ten contests (the 2002 game was a tie). This season, the Atlanta Braves failed to qualify for the postseason for the first time since 1990. Individual achievements included Barry Bonds who, despite questions surrounding his alleged steroid use and involvement in the BALCO scandal, surpassed Babe Ruth for second place on the career home runs list.

2009 National League Championship Series

The 2009 National League Championship Series (NLCS) was a best-of-seven baseball game series pitting the Los Angeles Dodgers against the Philadelphia Phillies for the National League Championship and the right to represent the National League in the 2009 World Series. The Phillies defeated the Dodgers four games to one. Los Angeles, whose NL-best 95–67 record topped Philadelphia's 93–69 record, retained home-field advantage. The series, the 40th in league history, began on October 15 and finished on October 21. TBS carried the championship on television.

The Phillies won the series, four games to one, advancing to the World Series for the second consecutive year. They were, however, defeated by the New York Yankees, 4–2.

This was the second consecutive NLCS between the Dodgers and Phillies and the fifth overall. The first two meetings were won by the Dodgers in 1977 and 1978, and the third by the Phillies in 1983; none of the three resulted in a World Series Championship by either team. The Phillies defeated the Dodgers in five games in 2008 en route to their 2008 World Series title. This match-up is the most frequent in the history of the NLCS (as of 2009) tied with the Pirates vs Reds.

In 2009, the Dodgers won the regular season series, four games to three, outscoring the Phillies 26–25.

The Phillies would go on to lose to the New York Yankees in the World Series in six games.

2009 World Series

The 2009 World Series was the championship series of Major League Baseball's (MLB) 2009 season. As the 105th edition of the World Series, it was a best-of-seven playoff contested between the Philadelphia Phillies, champions of the National League (NL) and defending World Series champions, and the New York Yankees, champions of the American League (AL). The Yankees defeated the Phillies, 4 games to 2, winning their 27th World Series championship. The series was played between October 28 and November 4, broadcast on Fox, and watched by an average of roughly 19 million viewers. Due to the start of the season being pushed back by the 2009 World Baseball Classic in March, this was the first World Series regularly scheduled to be played into the month of November. This series was a rematch of the 1950 World Series.

Home field advantage for the Series went to the AL for the eighth straight year as a result of its 4–3 win in the All-Star Game. The Phillies earned their berth into the playoffs by winning the National League East. The Yankees won the American League East to earn their berth, posting the best record in the Major Leagues. The Phillies reached the World Series by defeating the Colorado Rockies in the best-of-five National League Division Series, and the Los Angeles Dodgers in the best-of-seven NL Championship Series (NLCS). The Yankees defeated the Minnesota Twins in the American League Division Series and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in the AL Championship Series (ALCS) to advance to their first World Series since 2003. As a result of their loss, the Phillies became the first team since the 2001 Yankees to lose the World Series after winning it the previous year.

Cliff Lee pitched a complete game in the Phillies' Game 1 victory, allowing only one unearned run, while Chase Utley hit two home runs. In Game 2, solo home runs by Mark Teixeira and Hideki Matsui helped the Yankees win by a score of 3–1. After a rain delayed start, Game 3 featured more offense, with a combined six home runs and thirteen total runs en route to a Yankee victory. The Yankees won Game 4 by scoring the decisive three runs in the ninth inning after an alert base running play by Johnny Damon. The Phillies avoided elimination with a win in Game 5, aided by Utley's second two–home run game of the series. The Yankees secured their World Series championship with a Game 6 victory in which Matsui hit his third home run of the series. He was named Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the series, making him the first Japanese-born player and the first full-time designated hitter to win the award; Matsui was the series' MVP despite starting only the three games that were played at Yankee Stadium, since the designated hitter position is not used in NL ballparks.

Several records were tied, extended, or broken during this World Series, including team championships (Yankees with 27), career postseason wins (Andy Pettitte with 18), career World Series saves (Mariano Rivera with 11), home runs in a World Series (Utley with five), strikeouts by a hitter in a World Series (Ryan Howard with 13), and runs batted in in a single World Series game (Matsui with six).

B. J. Novak

Benjamin Joseph Manaly Novak (born July 31, 1979) is an American actor, writer, comedian, and director. Novak was one of the writers and executive producers of The Office (2005–2013), in which he also played Ryan Howard.

Chase Utley

Chase Cameron Utley (born December 17, 1978) is an American former professional baseball second baseman who played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for 16 seasons, primarily for the Philadelphia Phillies. He also played for the Los Angeles Dodgers. He is a six-time All-Star, won a World Series with the Phillies in 2008, and was chosen as the second baseman on the Sports Illustrated All-Decade Team for the 2000s.

He bats left-handed and throws right-handed.

After becoming a permanent fixture as the Phillies' second baseman, Utley demonstrated versatility, spending some time at first base as well. As his fielding has improved over his career, Utley was seen in combination with Jimmy Rollins as one of the best middle-infield combinations in the NL, until Rollins was traded to the Dodgers in the winter of 2014. Utley was considered by fans to be a team leader of the Phillies, alongside Rollins and Ryan Howard, and he has been noted for his leadership qualities with the Dodgers. Utley was known for his quiet understated demeanor, instead setting an example for teammates with his exhaustive preparation in the video room and the batting cage. Utley's seven career World Series home runs are the most for a second baseman, and he shares the single-series postseason record of five home runs with Reggie Jackson and George Springer. He is also noteworthy for having participated in seven no-hitters, of which he was on the winning side in four.

Christmas Party (The Office)

"Christmas Party" is the tenth episode of the second season of the American comedy television series The Office, and the show's sixteenth episode overall. It was written by Michael Schur and directed by Charles McDougall. It was first broadcast on December 6, 2005 on NBC. The episode guest stars David Koechner as Todd Packer.

The series depicts the everyday lives of office employees in the Scranton, Pennsylvania branch of the fictional Dunder Mifflin Paper Company. In this episode, the office throws a Christmas party and plays Secret Santa. Jim Halpert (John Krasinski), having put a lot of effort into finding a gift for Pam (Jenna Fischer), becomes frustrated when Michael Scott (Steve Carell) makes everyone play "Yankee Swap", and an iPod that Michael bought for Ryan Howard (B. J. Novak) becomes the hot object of the game.

The episode received positive reviews from television critics, with many applauding Michael's "Yankee Swap" scene. The episode was nominated for two Primetime Emmy awards, one for Outstanding Single-Camera Picture Editing for a Comedy Series, and one for Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series. "Christmas Party" earned a Nielsen rating of 4.3 in the 18–49 demographic, being viewed by 9.7 million viewers, making it, at the time of its airing, the highest-rated episode of the season.

Dunder Mifflin Infinity

"Dunder Mifflin Infinity" is the third and fourth episode of the fourth season of the American comedy television series The Office, and the show's fifty-sixth and fifty-seventh episode overall. The episode was written by Michael Schur, who also acts in the show, and directed by Craig Zisk. It first aired in the United States on October 4, 2007 on NBC.In this episode, Ryan Howard (B. J. Novak) returns to his old office and reveals his plan to bring technology to Dunder Mifflin. Michael Scott (Steve Carell) and Dwight Schrute (Rainn Wilson) try to prove that the personal touch is better than technology. Meanwhile, Jim Halpert (John Krasinski) and Pam Beesly (Jenna Fischer) reveal their relationship to the rest of the office, Kelly Kapoor (Mindy Kaling) attempts to reunite with Ryan, and Dwight and Angela Martin's (Angela Kinsey) relationship continues to plummet.

Initiation (The Office)

"Initiation" is the fifth episode of the third season of the American version of The Office, and the show's 33rd overall. In the episode, Ryan Howard (B. J. Novak) is taken by Dwight Schrute (Rainn Wilson) on what he believes is a sales call, but instead is brought to Dwight's beet farm for an "initiation." Pam Beesly (Jenna Fischer) is supposed to keep track of Michael Scott's (Steve Carell) productivity, but Michael spends his day waiting in line for a pretzel. Jim Halpert (John Krasinski) steals Karen Filippelli's (Rashida Jones) chair and foils her attempts to get it back.

Written by B. J. Novak and directed by Randall Einhorn, the episode first aired in the United States on October 19, 2006 on NBC. Upon its debut, "Initiation" was seen by an estimated 8.46 million viewers according to Nielsen Media Research. It was positively received by television critics.

Lakewood BlueClaws

The Lakewood BlueClaws are a Minor League Baseball team affiliated with the Philadelphia Phillies that play in the Class A South Atlantic League. They are based in Lakewood, New Jersey, and their home field is FirstEnergy Park.

List of Philadelphia Phillies award winners and league leaders

This is a list of award winners and league leaders for the Philadelphia Phillies professional baseball team.

List of Philadelphia Phillies team records

The Philadelphia Phillies have participated in 127 seasons in Major League Baseball since their inception in 1883. Through 2009, they have played 19,035 games, winning 9,035 and losing 10,162, for a winning their tenure as members of Major League Baseball's National League.

Chuck Klein, the franchise's only batting Triple Crown winner, holds the most franchise records as of the end of the 2009 season, with eight, including career slugging percentage, career on-base plus slugging (OPS), and single-season extra-base hits. He is followed by Billy Hamilton, who holds seven records, including career batting average and the single-season runs record.

Several Phillies hold National League and major league records. Pitcher/outfielder John Coleman is the most decorated in this category, holding three major league records, all from the franchise's inaugural season. Coleman set records for losses, earned runs allowed, and hits allowed, all in 1883 when he also set three additional franchise pitching records. Shortstop Jimmy Rollins broke Willie Wilson's record for at-bats in a single season with 716 in 2007, and first baseman Ryan Howard also set the major league record for strikeouts in a single season that same year with 199, before it was broken by Mark Reynolds of the Arizona Diamondbacks the following year. The 1930 Phillies, who went 52–102, set two more National League records, allowing 1,993 hits and 1,193 runs in the regular season.

Local Ad

"Local Ad" is the ninth episode of the fourth season of the American comedy television series The Office, and the show's sixty-second episode overall. The episode was written by B. J. Novak, who also acts in the show as Ryan Howard, and directed by Jason Reitman. It originally aired in the United States on October 25, 2007 on NBC.After a video team is brought to the office to create a commercial for the company, Michael decides that the employees of the Scranton branch of Dunder Mifflin can create a better commercial. While the majority of the staff work on the commercial, Dwight, still depressed from his break-up with Angela, instead chooses to play a computer game.

Michael Scott (The Office)

Michael Gary Scott is a fictional character on NBC's The Office, portrayed by Steve Carell and based on David Brent from the British version of the program. Michael is the central character of the series, serving as the Regional Manager of the Scranton branch of a paper distribution company Dunder Mifflin Inc. from seasons 1 through 7. However, he leaves Dunder Mifflin temporarily to form the Michael Scott Paper Company with Pam Beesly and Ryan Howard toward the end of the 5th season and shares a co-managerial position with Jim Halpert during a 6th season arc from "The Meeting" to "The Manager and the Salesman". In the end of the 7th season, he proposes to HR representative Holly Flax and moves to Colorado to take care of her aging parents, leaving the manager position to Deangelo Vickers in "Goodbye, Michael", to Andy Bernard in season 8 after Vickers becomes brain dead, and ultimately to Dwight Schrute in season 9.

Philadelphia Phillies annual franchise awards

The Philadelphia Phillies annual franchise awards have been given since 2004 by the Philadelphia chapter of the Baseball Writers' Association of America to four members of the Philadelphia Phillies franchise for "season-ending achievements." The awards were created by Bucks County Courier Times Phillies beat writer Randy Miller, who also served as the chairman of the BBWAA's Philadelphia chapter. Winners receive a glass trophy shaped like home plate. In 2014, a fifth award was added: the Charlie Manuel Award for Service and Passion to Baseball.

Promos (The Office)

"Promos" is the eighteenth episode of the ninth season of the American comedy television series The Office and the 194th overall. The episode was written by Tim McAuliffe and directed by Jennifer Celotta. It originally aired on NBC on April 4, 2013. The episode guest stars sports star Ryan Howard, Chris Diamantopoulos, Nora Kirkpatrick, and Allan Havey. Former lead actor Steve Carell also appears through archival footage.

The series—presented as if it were a real documentary—depicts the everyday lives of office employees in the Scranton, Pennsylvania, branch of the fictional Dunder Mifflin Paper Company. In this episode, everyone in the office is excited when international promos for the documentary surface, but are soon horrified to discover how much candid filming has taken place. While everyone panics about their secrets being revealed, Pam Halpert (Jenna Fischer) reflects upon how much she and Jim (John Krasinski) have changed over the past nine years. Dwight Schrute (Rainn Wilson) makes Angela Lipton (Angela Kinsey) jealous when he starts dating a Brussels sprout farmer. Meanwhile, at Athlead's office in Philadelphia, Jim and Darryl Philbin (Craig Robinson) have a big meeting with baseball player Ryan Howard, who pitches a bizarre sci-fi sports movie about himself.

The episode received mostly positive reviews from critics; many felt that while the episode had an interesting theme and that much of the drama was successful, the humor was too broad or forced. The episode was viewed by 3.44 million viewers and received a 1.8/5 percent rating among adults between the ages of 18 and 49. The episode ranked fourth in its timeslot, and it was the highest-rated NBC series of the night, though it was lowest rated episode of The Office at the time of airing.

Ryan Howard (The Office)

Ryan Bailey Howard (born May 5, 1979) is a fictional character on the US television series The Office. He is portrayed by the show's writer, director, and executive producer B. J. Novak, and is based upon Ricky Howard from the original British version of The Office (as well as Neil Godwin, during the fourth season), although his role is significantly expanded to that of a main character.

Safety Training

"Safety Training" is the twentieth episode of the third season of the American comedy television series The Office, and the show's forty-eighth episode overall. Written by B. J. Novak, who also acts in the show as sales representative Ryan Howard, and directed by Caddyshack and National Lampoon's Vacation director Harold Ramis, the episode aired in the United States on April 12, 2007 on NBC.In the episode, Michael Scott (Steve Carell) attempts to prove life in an office is dangerous after Darryl Philbin (Craig Robinson) berates him about the dangers of the warehouse. The attempts lead him to the roof of the building, where he tries to show that depression caused by an office can lead to desperate circumstances. Meanwhile, gambling between the other employees of the office leads Karen Filippelli (Rashida Jones) to discover that she is still an outsider.

The Fire (The Office)

"The Fire" is the fourth episode of the second season of the American comedy television series The Office, and the show's tenth episode overall. Written by B. J. Novak and directed by Ken Kwapis, the episode first aired in the United States on October 11, 2005 on NBC. The episode features Amy Adams as Jim's girlfriend, Katy.

The series depicts the everyday lives of office employees in the Scranton, Pennsylvania branch of the fictional Dunder Mifflin Paper Company. In the episode, Michael Scott (Steve Carell) takes it upon himself to teach Ryan Howard (B. J. Novak) about business, but soon everyone is forced to evacuate the office due to a fire. While outside, Michael continues to show an interest in Ryan, causing Dwight Schrute (Rainn Wilson) to be jealous. Meanwhile, Jim Halpert (John Krasinski) organizes games to play outside.

According to B. J. Novak, the episode was "a fun one to film". Although the cast and crew appear to be cold in the finished episode, "The Fire" was filmed in 100-degree weather; thus, the actors "couldn't look hot" and had to pretend to shiver. The firemen in the scene were played by actual firemen, and their costumes were designed in order to look like authentic Scranton firefighters.

The Office (American season 1)

The first season of the American television comedy The Office premiered in the United States on NBC on March 24, 2005, concluded on April 26, 2005, and consists of six episodes. The Office is an American adaptation of the British TV series of the same name, and is presented in a mockumentary format, portraying the daily lives of office employees in the Scranton, Pennsylvania branch of the fictitious Dunder Mifflin Paper Company. The season stars Steve Carell, Rainn Wilson, John Krasinski, Jenna Fischer, and B. J. Novak.

This season introduced the main characters, and established the general plot, which revolves around Michael Scott (Carell), regional manager of the Scranton branch office, trying to convince the filmmakers of the documentary that he presides over a happy, well-running office. Meanwhile, sales rep Jim Halpert (Krasinski) finds methods to undermine his cube-mate, Dwight Schrute (Wilson); receptionist Pam Beesly (Fischer) tries to deal with Michael's insensitivities and flubs; and temporary employee Ryan Howard (Novak) is acting mostly as an observer of the insanity around him.

Season one of The Office aired on Tuesdays in the United States at 9:30 p.m. The season debuted to high numbers, and garnered moderately positive reviews from critics aside from a poorly received pilot episode. While some enjoyed the pilot, others opined that it was a mere copy of the original British version. Universal Studios Home Entertainment released season one in a single DVD on August 16, 2005. The DVD contained all six episodes, along with commentaries from creators, writers, actors, and directors on most of the episodes, as well as deleted scenes from all of the episodes.

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Jason Bay
Baseball Prospectus Internet Baseball
NL Rookie of the Year

2005
Succeeded by
Hanley Ramírez
Preceded by
Chase Utley
Manny Ramirez
National League Player of the Month
August and September 2006
September 2008
Succeeded by
José Reyes
Albert Pujols
Preceded by
Pat Burrell & Chase Utley
Mike Schmidt Most Valuable Player
2006
Succeeded by
Jimmy Rollins

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