Wednesday, November 4, 2009

World Championship Thoughts

  • Wow. I've got a whole bunch of actual non-Yankee baseball thoughts kicking around in my head, but I think I'll save those for a later date.
  • This is the fifth Yankee championship that I've experienced. The win in 1996 was amazing simply because it was so unexpected. The Yankees really haven't been the underdogs since. In 1998, winning was something that had to happen. You can't win 114 games and not win the World Series. The victory was as much about not screwing up as it was about making the case for being the greatest team in history. In 1999 and 2000, we were building a dynasty. This time I can't really describe how I feel. My perspective on baseball is completely different from nine years ago. The Yankees were the best team in baseball this year, but that's been the case for many of the years we didn't win. Winning here is as much justification of the 103 wins during the regular season as it is anything else. I also feel vindicated personally for seeing my faith in A-Rod (which is to say my faith in talent over superstitious mumbo-jumbo) pay off. I feel great for him.
  • Part of me is also annoyed that we managed to win in 2000 and 2009, but couldn't manage a win in 2001-2008, which happen to correspond to exactly the years Mike Mussina was pitching for us. I know it's just a freak coincidence, completely random, but it's still sad to me that we managed to completely bookend his stay in New York. I'm sure that I'm exactly one of two Yankee fans that feel this way, but I loved me the Moose. Sorry, Mike.
  • Joe Girardi is going to get plenty of accolades for his managing because he won. Some of those will be deserved: going with only three starting pitchers, aggressively using Mariano Rivera, using Damaso Marte over Phil Coke; others will not: benching Nick Swisher, burning through relief pitchers like crazy, overmanaging for small advantages at the expense of the big picture. It's important to remember that all these things were true ex ante. They aren't any more or less true simple because the Yankees won.
  • Fox sucks. It's just amazing how much advertising they can cram into each broadcast. I can't get over how progressively absurd their "Keys to the Game"-type feature kept getting. They had a handful of good moments, but mostly it was all lost in a sea of advertising.
  • You couldn't ask for a better face for your team than Derek Jeter. It was sweet seeing him hoist the trophy again. I can only imagine how sweet it feels to be back on top after all that early success and the subsequent failures. And as usual, he made me happy to be a fan of him and of the New York Yankees. I get tired of the doe-eyed fawning over Jeter that seems to never cease, but I really do love the guy, not because he's clutch or calm or a great leader. Nah, I love him because he's a great player who doesn't seem to have the affectations of one. His personality is such that he makes you think that he's the guy you'd be if you were as awesome as him at baseball. I couldn't even begin to identify with Derek Jeter, but Derek Jeter makes me think that I can. Who knows why that is (I certainly don't), but whatever the reason, I can't not feel anything but awesome every time Derek talks about winning championships for the New York Yankees.
  • I'm tired. I got work tomorrow. I'll be digesting this one for weeks. But for now:



L. H. Lynch said...

Although I do not qualify as a Yankee fan on par with you or Robert, I assure you that I am also disappointed that Moose missed his World Series ring with the Yanks. I have had a soft spot for him in my heart ever since I saw him pitch for the first time, when he scored his perfect game by striking out Carl Everett.

rklllama said...

Ah... the perfect game! The cherry on the top of his third Cy Young season!

Yeah, its too be we totally Don Mattinglied him.