Brad Lidge has a bone to pick with the Catholics, but first he has a coveted piece of jewelery to obtain. That would be another World Series ring, the first step toward that beginning tonight (7:57 PM ET, Fox. I’ll bring the guacamole). Lidge, however, will not stop there. When the Series is over, he’ll be digging up other valuable artifacts.
(Pawning that big hat, for instance, could bring in about 75 bucks)
Lidge, during a bout of soul searching during a pitching slump, decided to pursue a degree in religious archaeology, with plans to eventually work in that field. He also says that the religious treasure on display at the Vatican in Rome could be put to much better use helping the poor.
Wait, Lidge went to Notre Dame, right? That’ll go over big.
It wasn’t your typical Series presser, to be sure. But in a piece today by the PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER’s Andy Martino, Lidge discusses “cultivating a personalized Christianity,” and feeling that there is “a higher purpose to life than just being a baseball player.”
“If I had to define myself now I would be nondenominational with a heavy appreciation for and leaning theologically toward Catholicism,” Lidge said. “But there are some things in Catholicism that I don’t subscribe to.”
That perspective hardened when Lidge and his wife, Lindsay, visited the Vatican.
“If you’ve seen the Sistine Chapel and you see the amount of wealth amassed there . . . if they decide there is a time when they really want to use that for God and Jesus’ cause, they could spread that,” Lidge said.
“They could sell all those things, auction them off and probably feed half that world’s starving population. There is that much wealth stored in the Sistine Chapel. For it just to be sitting there I think is a crime. It just doesn’t make sense anymore. People have given well-deserved gifts to the church, but Jesus said, ‘Store for yourself not treasures on earth but treasures in heaven.’ These are treasures on earth. That’s not what we’re supposed to be doing.”
Lidge ammassed a league-leading 11 blown saves this season, causing some Phillies fans to trade in their “Lidge Saves” T-shirts for ones that read “Lidge Blows.” He’s pitched well in the postseason, however. He said he got through it and stayed focus due to reading Scripture roughly three times each week, and attending Sunday services and Wednesday Bible study with his teammates.
He’s also pursuing an undergraduate degree in religious archeology from Regis University in Denver, specializing in artifacts of the late Roman Empire, and the period when Christianity spread across Europe.
In the spirit of that, I dug up this artifact: Lidge’s career record against the Yankees. In four appearances, his numbers are 4.1ip, 7h, 5r, 5er, 1HR, 1bb, 4so, 10.31ERA. Sweet Mother Mary and Joseph.
“Throw me the idol, and I’ll throw you the WHIP!”