World Series: Yankee Panky, Phillie Phactoids

 

Look at it this way. Things could be worse.

You could be a Cleveland Indians fan.

Two years ago the Indians were within one victory of a date with the Rockies in the World Series. They never got that win, blowing a 3-1 lead to the Red Sox in the ALCS.

Now the Tribe faithful get to watch a World Series where two former Indian Cy Young winners, the Yankees’ C.C. Sabathia and the Phillies’ Cliff Lee, are the aces of their respective staffs,.

When Sabathia matched up in Game One, it wasn’t the first time they faced off at Yankee Stadium. The two left-handers started in the first game at the new Stadium last April. Lee got the win and Sabathia wound up with a no decision as the Indians beat the Yankees 10-2.

And Lee prevailed again in the series opener, besting Sabathia and the Yankees in a complete game 6-1 victory.

All-White World Series

The 1950 World Series between the Yanks and the Phils has the dubious distinction of being the last World Series where every player for both teams was white.

When the Yankees added catcher Elston Howard for the 1955 season they became the 13th of 16 major league teams to integrate. The Phillies added John Kennedy in 1957, the last NL team to do so.

Yankee Panky

The Yankees victory in the ALCS snapped a two-game post-season drought against the Angels, who knocked the Yankees out of the divisional round in 2002 and 2005.

The only other team to beat the Yankees twice in a row in the post-season was John McGraw’s New York Giants, who won the World Series against the Yankees in both 1921 and 1922 when the two teams shared the Polo Grounds.

The last time the Yankees won a World Series in seven games was in 1962, when they prevailed over the San Francisco Giants. The Phillies have never played a seventh game in the World Series or any other playoff series.

Phillie Phactoids

The Phillies are the oldest continuous, one-name, one-city franchise in all of professional American sports, dating to 1883. The franchise was founded in Philadelphia in 1883, replacing the team from Worcester, Mass.

It took the Phillies 97 years to capture their first World Series. They “phinally” won their first title in 1980 when they beat the Royals in six games.

The Phils, of course, are defending champs, and for the first time in history they’ve won consecutive National League pennants.

Gotham vs. Philly

It’s too bad the Rangers aren’t skating against the Flyers this weekend. Then you’d have the total New York vs. Philadelphia sports showdown.

As it is, the Eagles are hosting the Giants Sunday. The Knicks play the 76ers in their home opener Saturday night at Madison Square Garden. And of course the Yankees and Phillies resume the World Series with three games in the City of Brotherly Love beginning Saturday.

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