Yankees Vaporize Oriole Dream: A Fan’s View

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Future Hall of Famer Derek Jeter.

The New York Yankees are dream killers.

The stage was set for a storybook ending. The Baltimore Orioles began the year chasing the Yankees, and ended it the same way. The two teams played each other 23 times, and were dead even until the Yankees emerged victorious in Game Five of the American League Division Series.

Incredibly, the Orioles erased a 10 game Yankee lead, and pulled even in September on multiple occasions. They never once surpassed them. It reminds you a little of those years the New York Mets chased the Atlanta Braves to no avail.

Much like those double elimination tournaments when you were in Little League post-season action, the O's had to start over. They needed to defeat the Texas Rangers and did. Once again, they were about to chase the Yankees, starting over this time at even. They started the dance all over again - falling behind, pulling even, falling behind, pulling even.

The storybook ending would have positioned the Orioles to win the fifth game and finally, after 168 games, pull ahead on the most important day of all, the last one. Perhaps it's too much to ask in a season in which the Oakland A's performed a similar feat by overtaking the Rangers on the last day of the regular season.

The Orioles were so plucky, so gutsy, so full of improbable, late inning wins. They embodied all the appealing characteristics of an underdog, a poised, working man's team that wouldn't be denied and just wouldn't go away. It's the type of team that should be rewarded, providing hope for all of us - the undervalued, the people who weren't expected to amount to anything, the little guy.

Unfortunately, the Yankees don't ever play that game. Their story is the important one. Their mission is more significant. If you have an underdog story you'd like to sell, stay away from the Yankee offices. They have plenty of miracles of their own to peddle, if you can label them such from a team with All Stars and Hall of Famers performing them. There's simply no room for other story lines when the Yankees are in town. You can only be a supporting actor.

Glenn Vallach has been a New York Mets fan since foolishly abandoning the mighty Yankees in his youth after Mickey Mantle retired. Since the fond, fleeting memories of the Tom Seaver, Cleon Jones, Tommie Agee years, he sits quietly yearning for a fraction of the success enjoyed annually by the team that inhabits the borough in which I was born...waiting and hoping...waiting and hoping.

Sources:

  • · Yahoo! Sports New York Mets page
  • · Yahoo! Sports New York Yankees page
  • · Yahoo! Sports Baltimore Orioles page
  • · Kevin Kaduk, Big League Stew, Yahoo! Sports, CC Sabathia drags Yankees into ALCS with two bookend gems against Orioles

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