My Favourite Player: Tom Baker on Alec Bohm

Whether they’re willing to admit it or not, every baseball fan has a favourite baseball player. Maybe it’s their favourite team’s current ace, the random right fielder whose jersey they received as a Christmas gift when they were eight years old, or a promising prospect whose career was cut short by injury.

In this new series, we’ll be asking British baseball fans to tell us how their favourite player came to be their favourite player and a whole lot more. Next up is new Phillies correspondent Tom Baker on the former first-rounder, Alec Bohm

Why Alec Bohm?

Bohm got his first Major League start in 2020, the same year that I first discovered baseball. In my head, we sort of came up together and we’re fellow travellers somehow; Bohm methodically working on his swing and me methodically googling “What the hell does ‘ERA’ mean?” We’re a team.

What’s your earliest memory of watching him play?

My earliest memory is ‘hearing’ him play. I think I’ve listened to more Phillies games than I’ve watched.

Bohm started his first game for the Phillies on August 13th 2020. I can remember Phillies broadcaster Scott Franzke announcing that he had his first Big League hit, “..a base hit down the line..” I googled, ‘what is a stand up double?’ and thought, we’re doing it Alec! We’re in the Majors!

Tell us about your favourite Alec Bohm moment.

My favourite Alec Bohm moment is a true Philadelphia moment and one of the greatest examples of Philadelphia sports fans’ warmth and kindness.

Early in the 2022 season. Bohm, having been so prone to errors, made a successful routine play against the Mets. As the crowd cheered sarcastically, Alec turned to then shortstop Didi Gregorious and said, “I fucking hate this place.” It was all caught on camera, and everybody saw it, and for a moment, I thought it was all over.

After the game Bohm told reporters it was a heat of the moment thing, that he didn’t hate this place, he actually loved this place. The next night, the crowd cheered him, but properly this time. Bohm was back. He belonged in Philly more than ever. I never felt more proud

Do you own any Alec Bohm merchandise?

I don’t! I really need to do something about that. There is an ‘Alec Bohm Foundation’ that sells merch and donates the money raised to charity. He’s a great guy.

I have a John Kruk jersey, which is nice but I do really need an Alec Bohm one.

What’s your favourite highlight?

In 2022, Bohm hit the 1000th home run in World Series history, and that was brilliant, but having seen him so miserable during his slumps in the 2021 season, nothing makes me happier now than seeing him celebrating or goofing around with fellow members of the Phillies ‘Daycare’, Bryson Stott and Brandon Marsh.

So, I feel that those ordinary mid-season moments are the real highlights.

Forget Mike Schmidt. Alec Bohm is my third baseman, and he always will be.

Article by Tom Baker. Look out for more Phillies content from Tom during the 2024 season.

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