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No time to panic, Yankees fans

Oct 29, 2009, 8:57 AM EDT

Here’s the situation: your team is unable to do anything against a Cy Young caliber pitcher.  Your ace gave up two home runs to the same guy on the other team.  Your bullpen was less than stellar. You’ve now lost the homefield advantage and you have an often erratic starter going in Game 2.  Time to panic?

Hardly, because that describes the exact scenario the Yankees faced in Game 2 of the 1996 World Series.

Because I’m an Atlanta Braves fan, I remember it well.  I was in law school then, and I remember the gloom and doom of my many, many New York Yankee fan classmates.  I even had a professor — himself a native New Yorker — who got bent out of shape when I wore my Braves cap in to class the day after Andruw Jones hit those two bombs.  Being young and relatively unschooled in the ways of the world, I gloated like crazy.  I was even worse about it following Game 2.

But we all know how that turned out.  The ace lefty acquitted himself quite nicely his next turn out. The Yankees’ deep bullpen asserted itself.  The Braves, after getting one lights out performance from Greg Maddux in Game 2, had no answer for the New York nine.  A dynasty was reborn that year, and that Game 1 has been rendered a mere footnote, notable for Andruw Jones’ coming out party and not much else.  That law school professor took a few minutes at the beginning of the first class following Game 6 to lecture me about premature jubilation.  It’s probably the only thing I remember from that class.

Will history repeat itself?  I have no idea. But I do know that Yankees fans would be well-advised to relax, and Phillies fans would be well advised to hold their “nobody believed in us” and “we told you so” rants until after Pedro Martinez and Cole Hamels pitch. 

For my part, I stand by my prediction: Yankees in six. Just like in 1996. 

  1. CeeGee - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:16 PM

    these Phillies are not the ’96 Braves!

  2. Pablo - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:16 PM

    “Ibanez isn’t a high priced free agent? $36 million for 3 years is cheap? Wow.”
    Tex $180,000,000
    CC $161,000,000
    AJ $82,500,000
    This offseason alone. Add that to A-Roid’s $250,000,000
    “Werth was a #1 draft pick or the O’s. He wasn’t a high priced free agent, but he wasn’t developed by the Phillies either. He had the talent, it just took him a little longer to put it together.”
    Yeah, Werth comes here as an unknown platoon outfielder and develops into an all star.
    I guess the coaching staff and hitting instructors just ignored him and he developed into a consistent offensive weapon all on his own.

  3. Craig Calcaterra - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:17 PM

    I know. Their rotation isn’t as good as the 96 Braves’ was.

  4. Joe - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:21 PM

    Vituperative? Vituperative? Gee, ah, let me see, gotta think hard on this one. Didn’t Julius Caesar also suspect Vivian of betraying him and so he also muttered “Vi, too” and then sputtered blood? Yea, that’s it; so, that origin of the word.

  5. Richie - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:21 PM

    hey pringles, the only time the Phillies will win a game is when Lee is on the mound. Do the math 4 cheese steaks to 2 for the Yankees.

  6. tarzan - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:21 PM

    Using a bit of metaphorical language, I’m just stating the obvious, it does not have to be logical or constructive, only an opinion describing what I have seen in the past and again last night. Your boys are panicking, mark my words. Settle down and go back to trying to improve your vocabulary.

  7. Joe - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:25 PM

    “…[G]o back to trying…”? Whatever makes you think that they were trying to improve their collective vocabularly before they started blogging about the game?

  8. Baseball Fan - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:25 PM

    Tarzan babe….its okay. Take a deep breath and relax…you are getting worked up over a game that you have no stake in. Yeah I am Yankees fan and I recognize the team has flaws and they are paid a lot of money yada yada yada..blah blah..blah. But the bottom line is if NY wins, people will talk trash…if they lose they will talk trash..its what keeps people you happy. If you are a honest fan, you take the good with the bad. I can live with whatever happens andI am not going to bust a blood vessel over it. So my advice to you is stop taking yourself so seriously and look to next year. Who knows Boston might make it to WS…then again, maybe they won’t…either way, they’ll have to go thru NY to get there.

  9. stonewind - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:27 PM

    I love these arguments– The Yankees are going to win because the Yankees (with different players) won it in 1996? That is like saying I am going to hit the lottery because my Dad, who has the same name, hit the lottery 13 years ago.

  10. Kathy - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:28 PM

    You are all just mad. Lets go Phillies. Phillies in 5 at home. I really don’t mind the yanks but we have the heart and drive to win. They just seamed lost last night.

  11. Joe - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:31 PM

    Wow, you deserve an Obama-Nobel-peace-prize-pre-performance congratulations, as this surely makes you likely to win the lottery. Hey, Yankee fans, what did you think of Utley tying Ruth’s record of being the only left-handed batter to hit two HRs off of a left-handed pitcher in the same WS game?

  12. Richie - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:32 PM

    The only way the Phils are winning the series is if they could pitch Lee everyday. Philly fans are funny, one ring and they think they own the baseball world. Dont get me wrong, Philly is a good team, however the only pitcher you have pitched last night and unless he can pitch every single game you are not winning this series. Pedro is coming home to Daddy tonight for a spanking!!!
    Yankees in 6!
    Who’s your DADDY???

  13. Joe - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:32 PM

    Hey, Yankee fans, I bet you’d like to chase Utely out of town before tonight’s game.

  14. tarzan - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:35 PM

    Baseball boy
    I’m not sure you noticed but I’m not getting too worked up, just stirring the pot of those who are. It’s just a game and I gave my opinion. Let’s talk when it is all over and you will see that I’m right, no need to get yourself worked up into a lather in the meantime. Stop making assumptions with no merit, remember I’m just man in a loin cloth swinging through he jungle looking for dinner.

  15. Joe - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:36 PM

    Yea, right. The Yanks have a real stopper throwing tonight. Sheesh, Utley, Howard, and Ibanez may have a feast. Phils 8 Yanks 6. You read it here first.

  16. Richie - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:37 PM

    Hey Joe, it figures Philly fans would get excited about that record, since the Phillies dont have any others. Its also funny how none of the Philly fans are talking tough about Pedro going tonight. Oh, that’s right he’s coming home to DADDY!!!!

  17. brian - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:39 PM

    David Wells was not with the Yankees in 1996. He got there afterwards.
    There goes your credibility.

  18. Brian - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:40 PM

    It stops when the rest of the media figures out what we already know. The Philadelphia Phillies are best and toughest team in baseball! Give them some credit!

  19. PHL Native - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:40 PM

    Wow. I think someone struck a nerve. Good luck on that hunt for dinner, Tarzan.

  20. Joe - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:41 PM

    What’s so “funny” about talking about Pedro? Was he born in the Bronx? Does his father still live there? Or did you mean ‘ironic’ instead of “funny.” Yanks will hit the prodigal son, but the Phils will hit Burnett even more.

  21. Richie - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:42 PM

    A.J. will be fine. Nice prediction though, I’m going with 6-2 Yankees, all 6 runs in the 4th inning.

  22. Joe - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:44 PM

    No way do the Phils only score 2 runs off AJ. I could see Yanks 7 to 5 or something similar, but you’ve gotta figure that the total runs scored will be 10 or more.

  23. tarzan - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:47 PM

    DHL man
    huh?, ok then, you keep up the good work…I’ve got to go, there are 3 guys in cheap leather jackets and pin striped shirts trying to steal Cheetah’s bananas.

  24. Ladyfan - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:50 PM

    Oh my did I strike a nerve, Tarzan? Sorry . . . but they are not “my” Yanks. I am a lifetime Red Sox fan, so I am accustomed to these verbal attacks. Have you looked up “metaphorical” lately? if you find a definition that says “nasty”, or “whiney”, or “trashy”, you let me know, big guy. In the meantime, you keep swinging in that breeze.

  25. Ladyfan - Oct 29, 2009 at 3:59 PM

    As a Red Sox fan, I am disappointed that you would think that Tarzan, a free-swinger with an obvious rectal fixation, would be a Red Sox fan. If he is, we don’t need him . . . he can go be a fan of some other team, no loss.

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