After his loss in Game 3, beleaguered Philly ex-ace Cole Hamels said of the 2009 season, "I can't wait for it to end." (See video here.)
Welcome to the club, Cole! I've done my best to enjoy this series, alternately rooting for and against both teams, but it's just not working out.
Started out on the Yankee side, but Squawker Lisa noticed I was enjoying Cliff Lee's Game 1 performance a little too much.
Rooted for Pedro Martinez in Game 2, but began to have nightmare visions of Pedro being an integral part in a Phillies title.
I've grudgingly come to accept that the Phillies also have claim to Tug McGraw, an integral part of the 1980 champions (though the Philly wordsmiths need to come up with their own catchphrase and not steal Tug's 1973 Mets' "Ya Gotta Believe"). But, unlike Tug in 1969, Pedro does not already have a ring with the Mets. So if he gets one with the Phillies, his three months in Philadelphia take on a lot more weight than his four years with the Mets.
Then in Game 3, Hamels is breezing along until he gives up a walk to Mark Teixeira in the fourth. The walk came on a 3-2 pitch that could have been called either way, and it seemed to rattle Hamels. Reminded me of when John Lackey seemed to lose focus after a similar call gave Jorge Posada a walk in Game 5 of the ALCS. Lackey went on to walk Derek Jeter and Mike Scioscia decided to pull him a batter later.
Then Alex Rodriguez hit what would be ruled a home run. It was great to see instant replay quickly revolving a controversy. Not everyone was happy with the ruling, but it is a lot better than no replay at all. Instant replay's use should be limited, but it is a positive thing.
But just when I could finally take pleasure in the Yankees' success because it was dooming the pitcher who called the Mets "choke artists" and denigrated Tampa Bay as "not being a World-Series type city," A-Rod starts making silly faces and hand gestures, telling the umps that it is a homer before they have made their decision. (After the game, A-Rod would appear to tell different stories on different networks as to whether or not he saw the ball hit the camera.)
But A-Rod did end up coming through while Ryan Howard continue to pile up the strikeouts. This time around, Hamels, the choke's on you.
Now the magic number is two, as in the World Series could end in two games, and Hamels and Met fans can begin looking forward to a "fresh start" next year.