He had a feeling.
Third-base umpire Scott Barry ejected Ryan Howard on a controversial call in the 14th inning Tuesday in a 4-2 loss in 16 innings to the Houston Astros at Citizens Bank Park. The Phillies had no more position players available, which meant they had to use Oswalt or Joe Blanton in the field. (Roy Halladay was pitching the next day, and was not an option. Kyle Kendrick was not an option because he was in the bullpen.)
Oswalt returned to learn he would play left field. Raul Ibanez moved from left field to first base, where he had not played since 2005. Oswalt had not played the outfield since he played there in slow-pitch softball tournaments growing up in Weir, Miss.
The crowd roared as Oswalt caught a routine pop fly to start the top of the 15th.
The reaction put a huge smile on his face.
"I was just kind of out of my element," Oswalt said Wednesday. "Everybody made a big deal about a fly ball. We catch 50, 60 of them a day during BP, maybe every day for 162 games. For 10 years that's a lot of fly balls."
So what would have happened had Oswalt needed to throw out a runner at the plate?
Would he have let loose?
"Oh, no doubt," Oswalt said. "Shane [Victorino] actually walked over there and said, 'If there's a high fly ball do you want me to catch it and throw it?' I said, 'No.' That's what I've been wanting to do forever is throw somebody out at the plate."
Oswalt ended up making the final out of the game, grounding out to third base. Nevertheless, it is a game Oswalt will not forget.
"I probably hadn't had that much adrenaline since the first day I got called up," Oswalt said. "I've played 10 years in the big leagues and I go to the mound every time. It's different for sure. It's a whole different feeling."