I know it’s the first week of November, but there’s a part of me that doesn’t really want this World Series to end. Even with two teams involved that traditionally would pose rooting dilemmas for me because of my lifelong affiliation with the New York Mets, I gotta admit this one has been a doozy.
Obviously, that’s not particularly insightful, since I imagine that it’s a fairly widely held view. And I imagine that the television ratings have been strong as well.
But what I like best about it is that seems like so many classic story lines: kick-ass pitching, a red-hot hitter (think five home runs), a smidgen of controversy with a string of umpiring snafus, the usual flubs from the assembled throng because of the smothering media coverage, a heads-up play on the base paths from Johnny Damon that somehow has not taken place in the previous 100-plus World Series, and even a good old-fashioned slugger mired in a World Series calibre batting slump.
I don’t know if the parish priests had the good folks in the Diocese of Philadelphia praying for Ryan Howard’s resurrection as they did 57 years ago in Brooklyn for Gil Hodges, but it certainly wouldn’t surprise me.
As I write this on the travel day back to Yankee Stadium, I can’t help but assume that Mr. Chase Utley is not likely to see very many decent pitches for the remainder of this World Series, but then I am kind of surprised that he’s been pitched to as much as he has anyway. I think I’d move Howard down the batting order a tad and put Jason Werth behind him for a bit more protection. I don’t typically offer advice to MLB managers, but I’ll make an exception for the Phillies.
I also got a chuckle out of the news that the Philadelphia Inquirer ran a three-quarter-page advertisement for Macy’s featuring the Phillies logo, the Commissioner’s Trophy and the phrase “Back To Back World Series Champions.”
The Yankees held a commanding but presumably not insurmountable 3-1 lead on the day the ad was printed in the paper.
This is not precisely the same thing as a magazine creating a cover image of Tom Brady and a 19-0 blurb a couple of years ago, but there are similarities.