After the Yankees wrapped up their series with the Angels last night, the Phils finally learned their opponent in the 2009 World Series. The Yankees, the winningest team in the history of the sport, stand in the way of another parade down Broad Street.
The Yankees bring their rich history of 40 World Series appearances and 26 rings back to baseball’s grandest stage in 2009. But you can expect the underdog Phillies to put up a fight.
For the Phillies things haven’t come easy this season, for the first time since 1981, they were forced to defend their crown. They’ve been through their share of trials and tribulations. But the attitude never changed. This is an organization that’s prided itself on hard work, and dedication, as well as perseverance.
Now, in the Bronx, with the crisp orange leaves falling from the sky, as the cool autumn breeze whistles through the air, a group of twenty-five men, a manager and a coaching staff are joined together with one common goal.
These men all grew-up far away from the streets of Philadelphia. They practiced baseball, dreaming to one day be able to showcase their skills on the grandest of levels. They never knew each other, and came to this organization through various outposts, some coming straight from high-school, others bouncing around from team to team, before finding a place they could call home.
They were raised in places like California, Florida, Texas, and the Midwest. They were perhaps unaware, and certainly isolated from the city they now find themselves fighting for.
Now they are cobbled together and charged with a task that baseball history has proved unlikely, a task Philadelphia has witnessed very infrequently in the history of professional sports in the city.
Repeating as a world champion.
This year, the road block is upgraded, perhaps. Instead of a ringless expansion franchise, the Phils get to face the best. Yet the mentality for the Phillies remains the same.
They think they can beat anyone. And they can.
The Yankees will be tough, coming at the Phils with bombers like Alex Rodriguez, Derek Jeter and Mark Teixeira. But the Phils can counter with stars like Chase Utley, Jimmy Rollins and the best hitter in the game right now, Ryan Howard.
The Yankees will throw pitchers like CC Sabathia, Andy Pettite, and A.J. Burnett. But the Phils will matchup with Cliff Lee, Cole Hamels, and Pedro Martinez.
The teams seem evenly matched on paper. But the Phillies get no respect. The national media’s act gets old.
I wonder what excuse the media will find this year to discredit the Phillies if they once again win the World Series. What kind of fluke will it be this time, guys?
Or is it that the Phillies are just that good?
Nah…it couldn’t be. It’s just another fluke.