Monday, September 15, 2008

Like elephants

I offer the following comment with no sense of joy, sadness, sarcasm, irony or any other emotion. Yes, now I am a Red Sox fan, but that is not why I include it here. After all, I grew up rooting for and admiring the Yankees.* I just think this is one of the best leads for a sports story that I have ever seen, evoking an entire season in about 50 words. It is by Sports of the Times writer Dave Anderson and appeared in the NY Times on September 14.

The Yankees, like elephants, have come home to die. During the homestand that will conclude next Sunday night with the baseball finale at Yankee Stadium, this uninspiring team will almost surely be eliminated from what many of their fans have come to consider an inalienable right — a place in the postseason.

(Of course, those were different Yankees.)


Anonymous said...

Your story lead is questionable! NO EMOTION?
I think not. If you are a Boston fan and we all know you are....there is a little smirk, a bit of giddyness for October and a feeling of aaaaaahhhhhhh............

John said...


e-Patient Dave said...

> I grew up rooting for the Yankees...
> of course those were different Yankees

Ohhhh, well said.

I did too. In my father's later years, we discussed what that was like. Being an upstate New Yorker (Binghamton) in the late 50s, when it wasn't just the postseason that was a "right," *victory* seemed to be a right. I described that experience to my dad, and he said "Yeah - like when I was a kid, Roosevelt was always the President."

I was born in 1950. From 1949 to 1964 (sixteen seasons) the Yankees were in the Series every year but two, and won nine of those fourteen.

The sense of entitlement was complete. There was simply no question that Mantle, Whitey Ford, Moose Skowron, Elston Howard, Cletis Boyer, and all those guys would just always be in the Series and usually win.

I vividly recall watching Bill Mazeroski's ninth inning home run go over that vine-covered wall in the 1960 series - the Yanks had out-hit the Pirates 91 to 60 and outscored them 55 to 27; this was IMPOSSIBLE.

So I say yes, that's a great sports lead. It captures a world of background in a few words.

Of course now I'm indelibly a Sox fan - so much that when I moved to Minnesota, I was eventually compelled to fly back to Boston and spend hundreds of dollars taking my (grown) daughter to a game at Fenway with great seats. And Fenway was actually a factor in my deciding I couldn't stay away and had to move back here: When I first watched Fever Pitch and saw that VW bug driving through Back Bay, then saw all those Fenway scenes, it drove me nuts. It was just wrong that I was away from home.

It turned out to be a darned good thing that I got back here a few months before my rapidly growing cancer was discovered. Sometimes I think my heart – including Fenway – saved my ass.

Jared At The Doctor Job said...

This weekend might not be the last game in The Toilet. Check out this quote from Joe Morgan from an ESPN chat:

"Looking forward to this weekend. My last game of the season will be Yankee Stadium's last game--maybe. I've heard rumors that the new stadium is behind schedule, so they may have to play a few games in the old stadium next year."

That's interesting, but then again, it is Joe Morgan so I would take the rumor with a grain of salt.