Specifically, for the aging veterans — the seasoned group of guys that have won so much — here and elsewhere — yet are enduring the dark days of defeat and the questioning of whether this is it.
Whether this is the end.
The Phillies (49-56) on Sunday closed what was an abysmal 1-8 road trip with another head-shaking loss to the Tigers, 12-4. The defeat handed the team season lows in consecutive losses (8), games below .500 (7) and games back of first place in the NL East (11).
The Phils looked silly in the field, a fitting way to finish an “embarrassing” road trip.
“Embarrassing” was a popular word in the Phillies' visiting locker room after Sunday’s debacle. There were plenty of intriguing sound bites after the team hit what you'd think would be rock bottom.
On the loss and what it will take to turn the organization around
“If there’s a bottom, this has to be it. I can’t imagine things getting worse than they have this past week, culminating the way they did today.” - Jimmy Rollins
“I definitely didn't come here for this.” - Jonathan Papelbon
“When we play that bad, yeah, I’m upset. In some ways it’s embarrassing to me. We come to the ballpark every day to play and to play right and win the game. When we don’t play right and we play bad — very bad — it bothers me.” - Charlie Manuel
“That was embarrassing. Yeah. I’ve seen a lot, but I haven’t seen that.” - Jimmy Rollins
“I hope we can play better than this. We better play better than this, I can tell you that. What was it, a month ago when I told you we’re going to give everyone a chance to play and see what they got? That’s what’s happening, isn’t it? I don’t think I lied or cheated anybody.” - Charlie Manuel
“Oh, man. We could be here all day. It's going to take, in my opinion, a lot. And in my opinion, I think it's going to have to be something very similar to what the Red Sox went through a couple years ago. From top to bottom.” - Jonathan Papelbon
On the chances of being traded and the team being rebuilt
“No, I would like to stay here. But if I'm going to have to put up with this year after year, then no, I don't want to be here. Why would you? Why would anybody?” - Jonathan Papelbon
“We’ll see [at the deadline]. Hopefully we can change everything and turn around everything. I don’t want anybody to leave here. But it’s not up to us. It’s up to the front office. Our job is to continue to play and see what happens.” - Carlos Ruiz
“Usually the veteran guys know the way the game goes. You have a feel for it. Everybody in here has been all-in to see if we can try to get some wins on this road trip. We needed it. That has been the primary focus.” - Michael Young
“It’s very rare you get to ride out on your high horse. That’s sports. You have highs and lows, and right now we’re low. No one wants to go out not being successful, but if this is his last year, [Manuel] did what he was brought here to do, and that’s to make us contenders and bring us a championship, and he did that. The last two years have been a struggle. We haven’t been healthy and haven’t had a good product, honestly.” - Jimmy Rollins
“Sometimes that’s kind of what baseball is about. That’s how the game goes. You make sure you have a passion for it and a love and you take advantage of it and you keep things in perspective and don’t let it slip away.” - Charlie Manuel