Tommy Pham’s lead-off triple in the 8th inning began the rally for the St. Louis Cardinals 2-1 victory on Monday night. It also marked the 16th of his 35 hits to go for extra bases. Combined with five home runs in his last seven games entering the night, Pham–and the hashtags with his name–have become the rage on social media.
#TheGreatPhambino #ThePhantomMenace #Phamtastic #JeanClaudePhamDam and more highlight timelines across Cardinals Nation.
“I don’t even really think about that stuff,” said Pham, who was unaware of the various names. “T-Pham” as his teammates call him, was, however, appreciative to hear of the line from David Bowie’s “Suffragette City”.
“Oh, that’s why,” he exclaimed in relief. “In Quad Cities, the guy, every time I hit a home run he’d be like ‘Wham Bam Thank You Pham’ and that’s where he got that from.”
While he’s not focused on social media hashtags, the outfielder is concentrating on still fine tuning his hitting, specifically eliminating a jump at the plate.
“I feel myself coming out of my hitting positions some times,” explained Pham. “Every hitter does it. It’s just something I would like to improve personally. It’s an everyday battle that we hitters work on with our mechanics. Certain things to perfect that will make us better individually, that’s just one for me.”
When the jumpiness occurs varies.
“I can go a game without being jumpy, but then I can go pitch to pitch or one at-bat or my last at-bat–it all depends,” said Pham. “It’s more of me as a hitter. It’s something–we’re talking something real small that makes the biggest difference in this game.”
The difference Pham has made for the Cardinals of late is not being lost on anyone–including his manager.
“He does what he does, he’s playing–that’s the nature of the game,” said Mike Matheny. “Young guys come in here and they get opportunities and then they’ve got to maximize them. To say that he’s maximized it would be an understatement. He’s doing a terrific job on both sides. He comes in prepared to play everyday and love the energy that he brings. Just want him to keep doing what he’s doing.”
ROSENTHAL TIES RECORD
–Trevor Rosenthal notched his 47th save of the season with the victory, which ties him with Jason Isringhausen and Lee Smith for the Cardinals single season franchise record.
“I’m sure I’m going to have a nasty text from Izzy here in a little bit,” laughed Matheny. “He told me to slow that kid down–I think he told me that in July a couple times.”
photo credit: Jeff Hanisch, Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports