Mets-Phillies Giving Yankees-Red Sox a Run for Their Money

June 11, 2009 by  
Filed under Fan News

As an avid Bleacher Report follower, I find it appropriate to give back to the readers with my first article. 

I could never find the right topic to write about until this week, when I saw the lopsidedness of the Yankees-Red Sox compared to the nail-biting cliffhangers between the Mets and Phillies. 

Don’t get me wrong, I respect the Yankees and Red Sox as two storied franchises with lots of hostility. The hatred between the fans and the bragging rights are great for the game and are what a rivalry is all about.

The Yankees’ dominance of the Red Sox over the years has been evident until the 2004 ALCS, when Boston became the first team in Major League Baseball history to come back from three games down to clinch the AL pennant against their rivals and eventually win their first World Series title in 86 years.

As a baseball fan, I can honestly say that was the greatest playoff series I have experienced. Had I been old enough to remember the 1986 World Series, my thoughts may differ.

With another Red Sox World Series under their belt in 2007, the role of underdog slipped away from the Sox. As recently as last night’s game, the Sox are 7-0 against their rival Yankees.

Seems as if ESPN and other networks covering the great sport of baseball have forgotten about the rivalry taking place in the Senior Circuit.

After 11 years, the Mets finally took the NL East crown from the Atlanta Braves in 2006.

After Endy Chavez’s home run-robbing catch of Scott Rolen in the sixth inning of Game Seven, destiny seemed to be on the Mets’ side. Unfortunately, an Adam Wainwright breaking ball ended New York’s hope of becoming title town. 

The next offseason began what may now be the best rivalry in baseball when Philadelphia shortstop Jimmy Rollins called out the Mets by claiming the Phillies as the team to beat in the NL East. 

Philadelphia was able to back that up easily after the Mets made what is considered one of the worst collapses of all time by squandering a seven-game lead in the final 17 games of the 2007 season. 

The collapse was complete when Philadelphia stole the division, leaving many Met fans wondering what had happened.

The 2008 offseason led to some more “smack talking,” as Mets outfielder Carlos Beltran staked his claim that the Mets were the team to beat in the NL East. 

Despite an 11-7 record against Philadelphia, the Mets still found a way to fall out of playoff contention and watch their rivals beat the Tampa Bay Rays in the World Series.

I guess actions speak louder than words.

So what’s next? The Mets worked on their bullpen this offseason by signing Francisco Rodriguez, who got in on the fun by claiming the Mets as the team to beat. Meanwhile, World Series MVP Cole Hamels called the Mets “choke artists” on the Mets’ flagship station 660 WFAN. 

As recent as June 10, 2009, the Yankees are 0-7 against Boston with losses of 5-4 in 11 innings, 16-11, 4-1, 6-4, 7-3, 7-0, and 6-5. The Mets are currently 4-2 against Philadelphia with victories of 7-4, 1-0, 7-5, and 6-5, and losses of 6-5 and 5-4, both in 11 innings.

The fight on and off the field has shown this rivalry to be baseball’s best. The Yankee-Red Sox matchup, at times interesting, has lost its luster. Meanwhile, the Mets-Phillies rivalry has just begun to peak.  

So the next time you see a commercial for a Yankee-Red Sox matchup on ESPN or Fox, just know that you may be missing out on an even better one.  

Article Source: Bleacher Report - Philadelphia Phillies

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