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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. Joe - Oct 29, 2009 at 4:54 PM

    Yea, even with some changes to FA that I posted earlier today, the Yanks still would get the best players and always would be in contention to play in the post season. And this is okay, because the Yankees being, well, the Yankees is good for baseball. Everyone wants their team to beat the Yanks.
    Just as the NFL was much more exciting when everyone wanted their team to beat the Cowboys. The Pats just don’t cause the same bile to build up as did the Cowboys.

  2. mick-7-1961 - Oct 29, 2009 at 4:56 PM

    Their ORIGINAL owner was the first pro baseball player.

  3. Joe - Oct 29, 2009 at 5:00 PM

    Yes, and it’s precisely due to the fact that the Phils have been the same franchise in the same city for eons that it became the first team to lose 10K games. Even the Yanks were first the Orioles (this is true), then the Highlanders, and finally, the Yanks. The Orioles were the St. Louis Browns before they became the Birds. The Braves have been in Boston, Milwaukee, and Atlanta. The Twins were the Senators for many years. So, maybe, other teams have 10K losses, but not as one continuous franchise in the same city. Does NBC Sports have the records on this?

  4. mick-7-1961 - Oct 29, 2009 at 5:05 PM

    It’s really hard not to like them, Joe.
    They handle themselves with class….they looked unbelievably relaxed in the dugout during the entire 9 innings, last night.
    I read where Girardi is benching Swisher tonight…not to second guess the skipper, but with Pedro on the mound, I’d rather have a seasoned Swisher up to bat in lieu of whoever Joe’s replacing him with.

  5. Joe - Oct 29, 2009 at 5:11 PM

    Gardner? And Cabrera goes to left and Damon to right?

  6. tim - Oct 29, 2009 at 5:12 PM

    I will give you this lee is one heck of a pitcher and you guys played. CC had and off night but he has more than prove himself. Lets see what happens when you have to go to your bullpen then we will see what type of farm system you have.

  7. Joe - Oct 29, 2009 at 5:13 PM

    It’s an organic farm system. Very healthy for a team’s finances.

  8. mick-7-1961 - Oct 29, 2009 at 5:16 PM

    Harston Jr? in for the switch-hitting Nicky Swisher.
    Pedro won’t last 4 innings….if the crowd doesn’t unnerve him, A-Rod, Johnny D and Jeter will. Can’t wait.

  9. Happy in Boston - Oct 29, 2009 at 5:19 PM

    I loved game 1.In fact I haven’t liked a Yankee playoff loss this much since we staked the Yankees to a 3-0 lead in 2004 and then spanked then 4 straight. Let me help that Yankee radio guy with his A-Rod call.
    Another A-Stinker from A-Rod. The Yankees lose, the Yankees lose, theaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa Yankees lose.
    Lovin it in Beantown.

  10. Joe - Oct 29, 2009 at 5:42 PM

    Boston = cheaper version of Darth Vadar and the Evil Empire, w/o the storied history.

  11. wolfie 11 - Oct 29, 2009 at 5:50 PM

    That’s the difference. I couldn’t tell you who the Boston radio announcers are. It is however nice to hear Eckersley whine on NESN, and it’s somewhat heart warming to know John Sterling gets on your nerves.

  12. Brian - Oct 29, 2009 at 7:02 PM

    I’m sure the umps will find a way to give the Yankees another undeserved win. Great job this postseason Major League Baseball. Your sport is a joke.

  13. mick-7-1961 - Oct 29, 2009 at 7:03 PM

    Hey Brian, must be a Red Sox fan, huh?
    Maybe next year, Paisan.

  14. JetersPeter - Oct 29, 2009 at 7:07 PM

    I love it when Yankee fans are leaving early because their steroid and overpaid crybaby players are tanking. After beating the much better Angels, I am looking for a Philly sweep. (And a nice cheese steak!)
    Go Phils!

  15. CpinPhilly - Oct 29, 2009 at 9:37 PM

    I just realized something too. I must be getting slow …but Craig is just a disgruntled Braves fan. That says alot about why this article was written. Somewhere too a Boston based writer is on the Phillies bandwagon.

  16. comeonman - Oct 30, 2009 at 10:06 AM

    HER COME THE YANKEES,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

  17. comeonman - Oct 30, 2009 at 10:07 AM

    HERE COME THE YANKEES,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

  18. SDfromPHL - Oct 30, 2009 at 2:38 PM

    26 Championships, 40 WS appearances. 3 peat in the 90’s. 40 Pennants.
    2 Championships, 7 WS appearances. 7 pennants.
    Which one is which?
    Keep hating one of the most storied franchises in sports history.
    there are two kinds of stories; fiction and stories based on past events. We all know the Yankees accomplishments aren’t fiction, but they are in the past and none of this bunch of overpaid egomaniacs was part of the story. the Yanks are a storied franchise, but you NY fans can’t keep re-reading the same story. It’s our time now!

  19. BronxBobby - Nov 1, 2009 at 9:58 AM

    didn’t mo, jeter and jorge have something to do with that story 4 WS, seven pennants something like that?

  20. Robert - Nov 3, 2009 at 7:18 PM

    Pettite is better than Pedro, and food for thought for Phillie fans,
    Lee got roughed up for 5 runs, Arod is hot, Tex is starting to hit, Cano broke out of his slump, Matsui is in as DH now, and Gardner can
    cover more ground in Center than Victorino and Shane is less than 100%. Its hard to throw a ball or bat when your index finger is twice its normal size. Yankees in 6, Pedro out in 5.

  21. Randall Ferraro - Nov 11, 2009 at 3:09 PM

    That’s right dumbazz–that’s exactly what happened! Hahahaha! Another phiwwy loooooooooooooooooooserrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!!! Hahaha!

  22. Spice - Nov 15, 2009 at 8:19 AM


  23. Spice - Nov 15, 2009 at 8:20 AM

    Does it hurt enough?

  24. Spice - Nov 15, 2009 at 8:24 AM

    I marked your words. I guess your word is worthless

  25. Spice - Nov 15, 2009 at 8:30 AM

    Fun looking back at this stream after the series is over.
    lessons learned:
    1) the Yankees are a better team
    2) Charlie M can not manage inside a game. His decisions were horrible.
    3) Ryan Howard has no idea where the strike zone is
    4) the Yankees are a fundamentally better team
    5)Phillies fans have no ability what so ever to understand the game of baseball

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