Kruk to join Phillies' Wall of Fame on Aug. 12

Kruk to join Phillies' Wall of Fame on Aug. 12

Kruk to join Phillies' Wall of Fame on Aug. 12
PHILADELPHIA -- John Kruk won't even come close to comparing himself to names like Mike Schmidt, Steve Carlton and Richie Ashburn.

For Kruk, being the Phillies' 2011 Wall of Fame inductee is about family and the smiles and sense of pride his kids will hold when they return to Citizens Bank Park years later and see their father's name stand among the 32 other Phillies greats.

Kruk will be formally inducted Aug. 12, before to the start of the Phils' game against the Nationals, when a 14-by-20-inch bronze plaque of Kruk will hang in the Memory Lane section of Ashburn Alley.

Now an ESPN baseball analyst, Kruk is synonymous with the Phillies' renegade 1993 National League championship team.

"It seemed like when we got together in mid-February, it was like one big party and the games just happened to be there," said Kruk, who brings a refreshing air of humor to the game.

"To describe that team, when the most sane person on your team has Tourette's syndrome ... we had the perfect coaching staff, they were more messed up than we were."

A three-time All-Star and career .309 hitter with Philadelphia, Kruk is one of only six Phillies with a career on-base percentage of .400 or higher.

He was traded from San Diego in 1989 soon after Larry Bowa was dismissed as the Padres manager, only to reunite with his former skipper in Philly when Bowa talked the front office into dealing for Kruk.

"I could be what I wanted to be here," Kruk said. "San Diego, I had to be what they wanted me to be. I wasn't no choir boy, if you know what I mean."

He briefly recalled some of the more memorable moments of his time in Philly.

Actually giggling at a teary-eyed Bill Giles following the Game 6 loss to the Blue Jays in the World Series, simply because nobody expected the Phillies to even make it that far.

Or when the Phils and Padres completed a doubleheader at 4:40 a.m. after the second game started at 1:28 a.m.

"We knew we had the advantage," Kruk quipped. "1, 2, 3 in the morning, that was right here in our prime."

He then got into the current club, pitching the idea to just have the Red Sox and Phillies play in the World Series and let everyone enjoy their summer.

He called the 2011 version of the Phils the best the organization has put together, even if they can't compete with the level of fun the '93 team had.

It all led to this exchange with team president David Montgomery:

"If you'd have given us a hundred and how much million, we could've been a little better," Kruk said.

"Hey John, I ... things have changed," Montgomery said.