When this weekend's half of the Subway Series began, I was actually pretty irate. I thought it was absolutely ridiculous that the Yankees would have to play in an National League park while in a division race and while trying to lock down a playoff spot. It was clear from the first night's lineup that the Mets would have an obvious advantage head to head at Citi Field because the Yankees couldn't start their team leader in home runs. On Friday night, I actually wanted to find the person who made this season's schedule, drive them to the Bronx Zoo, and throw them into the African Plains exhibit to see how they fared against the lions. Saturday was a rough day for me. It was my dad's birthday - the first since he passed away last October. I went to the cemetery and when I was left alone at his grave, I filled him in on what was happening in baseball. I always do that when I go. I vowed that morning that I wasn't going to watch the game or even look at the score updates because I knew I'd be an emotional wreck and didn't want anything adding to it. That changed when I arrived home from dad's grave and my brother told me that the Yankees were up 3-0 on Noah Syndergaard after the first inning.
I didn't watch the game in its entirety but I ended up watching the last two innings. I also thanked my dad when the game ended because I feel like he had a hand in the outcome. I know, that probably seems silly but it makes me feel better to think that way.
I actually wasn't planning on watching last night's game because I figured CC Sabathia vs. Matt Harvey could turn out to be a nightmare matchup. I was also kind of forced into it thanks to my brother and his girlfriend. But at the same time, I had this odd feeling that the game would turn out to be okay for the Yankees. It felt like a reverse lock in a way because people were expecting CC to be terrible, even though he's been pretty good of late. I also felt that since Harvey was on some sort of limit, and that if CC could do his part and limit the Mets' scoring, the Yankees could hang around and win the game late. I love when my thoughts are correct. Don't you?
And let's be real, CC's first inning could have been so much worse than how it turned out. I even said to my brother, "Maybe the first inning will be his one bad inning." My brother scoffed at that notion but again, I was right. CC settled down and pitched pretty damn well. He looked like the CC Sabathia of old.
And I was thrilled to see the Yankees' offense take advantage of Harvey's early exit from the game. That's what good teams do. You pound the other team into submission and you don't let up. Five runs in the sixth inning weren't enough for the Yankees. They had to score another six in the next two innings combined with another five coming in the eighth inning alone. That was fun.
After Greg Bird's three-run home run sailed into the left field seats in the top of the eighth, I raised my arms in triumph as if I were signaling a touchdown. First, because nothing makes me happier than the Yankees rendering Mets fans speechless which is what happened when the Yankees went up 11-1, and secondly, because I had just finished saying, "I'd like for Greg Bird to hit a home run right now and shut those people up," about a second before he hit the home run. My brother's girlfriend couldn't believe it. Her eyes bugged out of her head, she pointed at me and said, "Oh my God you called it."
So thanks to last night's victory, the Yankees won this year's edition of the Subway Series 4-2. Clearly, they are not ready to give up the city to the team over in Queens just yet.
Can I just say how ridiculous that whole notion is anyway? It's going to take a lot more than one good year by the Mets to take over anything. And it would also have to happen in a year when the Yankees aren't in the playoff hunt themselves. The sad truth is Mets fans will find any silly ol' thing to cling to and then proceed to pound it into the ground. This year it's "taking back the city." They even made t-shirts about it after completely falling hook, line, and sinker for a narrative that was concocted by obviously bored New York sportswriters. Silly geese.
And when people refer to the Yankees as big brother to the Mets, they're not lying. It goes for the fanbases as well. Mets fans will probably get mad at me for this, but I've been watching baseball a long time and I know it to be true: they have a younger sibling mentality when it comes to the Yankees and rooting against them. Mets fans will openly root against the Yankees even when the Yankees' results have nothing to do with the Mets or their position in the standings where Yankees fans, or at least most of the Yankee fans I know, couldn't care less about what the Mets do against the Braves or Marlins in July.
I think I have mentioned this story once before, but I will tell it again for new readers of the blog because it proves my point about some of the more annoying Mets fans in existence. When I was working at NBC, the Executive Vice President of my division and his assistant were huge Mets fans. And they were the worst kind of Mets fans, they were relentless shit talkers. In 2007, if you recall, the Yankees started off the season playing terrible baseball and it actually continued well into June and July. During those early to middle months of the 2007 season, I never heard the end of it from Rich and Darlene. And it wasn't just in passing, they'd make it a point to walk all over the way over to my cubicle, which wasn't even anywhere near Rich's office, and trash talk.
And I took it. What could I say? The Yankees looked awful and the Mets didn't. But slowly as the season went on, the Yankees got better, and actually locked up a playoff spot before the Mets could.
On the last Sunday of the season, I sat in my apartment and gleefully watched as Tom Glavine gave up six runs to the Marlins in the first inning of the Mets' "if we don't win, we're out of the playoffs" game. I laughed my ass off.
The next day, I walked into the office, though the double glass doors, looked at my coworker and fellow Yankee fan Joe and yelled loud enough for everyone to hear me, "Isn't it a glorious Monday morning?" He laughed, we 'high fived' each other and I walked to my cubicle.
That's all I did. I didn't run over to Rich and Darlene's area and gloat*. I ignored them. By noon, I guess Darlene couldn't take it, and she walked over to my cubicle. She said something to the effect of, "Come on, let us have it." And I told her that I don't gloat until I have something to gloat about. I also said that the Yankees could lose to Cleveland in the first round so why should I gloat about anything? There's one time when I wish I wasn't right.
So what's the point to all of this blathering on and on? Oh, right, the point is, I get enjoyment out of Mets' fans misery when they gloat too soon. And I am not actually gloating. While I'm happy the Yankees were able to win the Subway Series and shut some people up, I know that there's a lot more to be done. More important things like playing an actual, legitimate rival up in Toronto.
And with that said, LET'S GO YANKEES!
*Don't do a shot every time I write gloat. I don't want you going to the hospital...