Every choreographed Phillies celebration, ranked
The Phillies are off to a roaring start to the season. After completing a three-game sweep of the division-rival Braves, their busy offseason seems to have already paid dividends, as they are the last remaining undefeated team in the game.
There has been plenty to celebrate in Philadelphia, especially when it comes to the Phillies' offense, which has hit eight home runs on its way to putting up 23 runs over the first three games. As such, there have been a lot of handshakes and handshake-adjacent celebrations at Citizens Bank Park, many of which display some level of planning.
Before these celebrations become routine and ordinary, it's important that we establish a clear hierarchy of the team's handshakes.
No. 10: J.T. Realmuto and Rhys Hoskins' gut punch and yell
On Saturday, Realmuto hit his first home run as a Phillie on a 112.8-mph line drive over the left-center-field wall. As he crossed home plate, he celebrated with the guy he drove in. The celebration scores well in the energy category, as both Realmuto and Hoskins are clearly pumped up -- but, as we'll see, it lacks the creativity of many of the other entrants.
No. 9: Maikel Franco and Realmuto's leaping forearm bump
Franco's three-run homer on Opening Day gave the Phillies a 6-1 lead and served notice to the NL that this team's lineup is very deep and very fun. He celebrated at home plate with a leaping forearm five with Hoskins.
This shows a little more coordination than the Realmuto-Hoskins celebration above, but it's still pretty simple.
No. 8: Franco and Cesar Hernandez's stutter and forearm bump
Franco followed up his Opening Day home run with a two-run homer on Saturday, driving in Hernandez from third. As Franco crossed home plate, he took a couple stutter steps before recreating his celebration from the previous day -- this time with Hernandez. The stutter step earns the style points that put this above his previous work.
No. 7: Bryce Harper and Hoskins lock arms
On Saturday, Harper hit his first home run as a Phillie on a towering 465-foot blast to right-center field. Before he got a curtain call from the home crowd at Citizens Bank Park, however, he had to celebrate with his fellow slugger -- with a slightly more intimate take on Franco's forearm slaps.
There's some evidence of planning in this celebration, putting it ahead of the other handshakes. But, as we'll see, there's a big jump in choreography from here to the top half of the rankings.
No. 6: Harper and Segura rock out
Harper's home run Sunday night culminated with an impressive display of handshakes and celebrations in rapid succession. They were each lovely in their own right, but the joy on his face as he instructs Jean Segura to rock on is infectious.
No. 5: Harper and Andrew McCutchen put on suits
We're not entirely sure what's going on here, but it looks like Harper and Cutch are celebrating their dingers by putting on their Sunday best. Regardless of what they're doing here, this is clearly a move they had been working on out of the public eye before debuting it on the field. It was well rehearsed and well executed.
No. 4: Cutch plays Rock-Paper-Scissors with Dusty Wathan
Bryce wasn't the only one doing work this weekend: McCutchen had two home runs in his first series as a Phillie, including a leadoff homer on Opening Day. On both of them, he played a quick game of rock-paper-scissors with Wathan, the Phillies' third-base coach, as he rounded the bases. On Sunday night, he lost -- throwing up scissors to Wathan's rock. He'll have to homer again to force a rematch.
No. 3: Harper poses with a coach
After hitting two impressive home runs in his first three games at Citizens Bank Park, it's understandable if Harper starts walking a little taller and sticking his chest out a little farther these days.
No.2: Hoskins eurosteps past Cutch for a layup
After his grand slam on Opening Day, Hoskins was obviously in great spirits. In what would become a preview of the outfield's postgame celebration, he made his way back to the Phillies' dugout by eurostepping past McCutchen for a pretty little finger roll. That combination of power in the grand slam and finesse in the layup merits a high ranking.
No. 1: Harper and Franco's shake and point
Harper and Franco have two home runs each and, as such, their celebration game is already polished. It may not have involved as much practice or creativity as McCutchen's game of rock-paper-scissors or Harper and Cutch putting on their suits. But, what it lacks in complexity, it makes up for in execution. Harper and Franco are perfectly in-sync on their crouches and arm motions.
That's how you do an orchestrated handshake.