Let the World Series build-up begin

The Phillies first popped the champagne three weeks ago after finishing sixth and final in the National League playoffs. The site? Minute Maid Park in Houston.

They’ll return to the stage for their first post-season celebration on Friday night with an eye on one more party — a big one. It’s the Phillies vs. the Astros in Game 1 of the World Series, the perfect time to get some cheap shots of the Houston team:

But enough ancient history of frauds and scammers. Winners of 106 games, these Astros are the real deal and heavy favorites against the Fightin’ Phils, who have heard that line before. There will be a five-day build-up to Game 1, and Scott Lauber gives us a start with five storylines for this World Series.

Follow all of Inquirer.com’s World Series coverage here.

—Jim Swann, Inquirer Sports Staff, @phillysport, [email protected].

You are a manager for a day: Assuming Zach Wheeler, Aaron Nola and Ranger Suarez are out, who will start Game 4 of the World Series for the Phillies and why? Email us for a chance to be featured in the newsletter.

Downingtown-born Miles Teller “always lived and died with Phyllis, dude. That has always been the most important thing to me.” There were also who knows how many thousands in the ballpark for the Phillies’ Game 5 victory in the NLCS, on street corners throughout the city and surrounding suburbs, in family rooms and corner pubs — those who had experienced that joy before and after a decade without him. I longed to feel it again.

Bryce Harper’s home run on Sunday sparked a wild reaction at Citizens Bank Park and throughout the region. How would Phillies players and management describe it? Marcus Hayes asked them.

The next one: The Phillies open the World Series in Houston at 8:03 p.m. Friday (Fox29).

The 76ers waived Charles Bessie after a logjam at center was created with the late-season signing of Montrezl Harrell.

But it didn’t take him long to get back on his feet as offers started rolling in from around the league. He ended up talking to 22 teams before joining the San Antonio Spurs on a two-way trade.

Basie spoke with The Inquirer’s Keith Pompey about joining the Spurs and returning to San Antonio, where he attended high school after arriving in America from Lagos, Nigeria.

The Sixers started the season 0-3, but PJ Tucker righted the ship by providing veteran leadership.

The Sixers won! It wouldn’t normally be such a feat in the regular season, but it’s the first time it’s happened in four tries.

Perhaps the Sixers took inspiration from another winning Philadelphia team, sending players to ring the bell and support the team.

Next: After recording their first win of the season, the Sixers move on to face the Toronto Raptors on the road at 7:30pm on Wednesday (NBCSP).

Sunday marked the return of former Airman Oscar Lindblom to Philadelphia.

Lindblom, who became a fan favorite and an inspiration for his courageous battle with cancer during his time with the Flyers, faced his old teammates at the Wells Fargo Center for the first time as a member of the San Jose Sharks.

Jana Hahn spoke with Lindblom and his surgeons about his long road back to the ice after being diagnosed with Ewing’s sarcoma.

Next: The Flyers (4-2-0) do not play until Thursday when they host the Florida Panthers (7 p.m., NBCSP).

If you look at who the Eagles will be playing the rest of the season, many of those teams’ offenses are facing question marks. Carson Wentz is out against the Eagles. On Monday, it was indicated that Matt Ryan would remain on the bench. Dak Prescott returns from injury. Kenny Pickett, who the Eagles face on Sunday, is a rookie who is just getting started. At a time when the Eagles are on top, their upcoming opponents are still figuring things out. The Giants look good though!

Who was the MVP when the Phillies won the 1980 National League Championship? The first one with the correct answer to [email protected] will be featured in the newsletter.

A) Mike Schmidt

B) Manny Trillo

C) Steve Carlton

D) Pete Rose

We asked you: Who was your NLCS hero and why? Among your answers:

To me, this year was very reminiscent of both the championship teams of 1980 and 2008 and the ways in which they won it all, where everyone contributed. We’ve had our share of great players, but everyone seems to have contributed on those World Series winning teams. I’m focusing solely on the Phillies’ last two World Series winning teams because I think that team has the players and the manager to beat the Houston Astros with the support of our great fans. Our entire squad and our coaching staff will make that dream a reality. Come on Phyllis! – Jeffrey S.

It’s only fitting that Bryce Harper is right in the middle of the team photo after their incredible win yesterday. He is my NLCS hero and has cemented himself in Philly baseball history. He kept the team positive throughout the season, even after fracturing his thumb. He has always been an optimist and a true leader at the club. I waited for the Padres to pitch [Josh] Hader and when they didn’t I felt in my bones that Bryce was going to make them pay. And they paid. It was an incredible and fitting end to a game the Phillies deserved to win. Take the World Series! Bryce and Phils are done! – Cathy T.

I have been a [Rhys] Hoskins fan since I saw him play for Lakewood in Class A ball. He was the face of the Phillies before we signed Harper and I feel like he still is!!! — Wayne S.

Harper. If we had him in ’64, Chico Ruiz wouldn’t have mattered. – David W.

Rob Thomson. I never panicked. Seems to be making all the right moves (or not) at the right times. — Tom O.

No, sorry guys; you can’t choose a character here. This was a team effort from the top of the payroll and front office all the way down to Allentown, which is just SO appropriate for the Philly atmosphere! Not only did they all excel, but if any of them DIDN’T, the Phils wouldn’t be in this position today. As is often said, there is no “I” in “team”. But this year in Philly it should probably be spelled “tweam” as it sure had a “WE” in it this season! — Marty M.

We put together today’s newsletter using reporting from Mike Jensen, Keith Pompey, Gina Mizell, Scott Lauber, Mike Cielski, Marcus Hayes, Jana Hahn, Ed Barkowitz, Emily Block, Andrea Canales and Kayden Steele.

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