Thursday, November 5, 2009

Nothing Left To Do But Smile, Smile, Smile

Hey there Fackers. Well, this might be the most expensive post I've ever authored here. As I mentioned last week, I've been in Chicago since Saturday. Since my swanky hotel charges $15 a day for internet and I've been trying to keep expenses down, I've been off line since writing the Game Three recap (thanks for carrying the weight Jay - great job this week). But in the euphoria of winning tonight I decided the company can spare an extra $15 and get me online - it's cheaper than having to pay for a superstitious flight reschedule and extra hotel night had the Yankees lost tonight.

I want to share a quick story that bends a bit from the logical, rational type of thing we've tried to do all season long. As I mentioned last week, the Yankees have never won the World Series with me being at home. In the story I told earlier this year, the first time the Yankees won the World Series in my lifetime, 16 year old Matt was on a field trip to Washington, D.C., being held hostage at some lame ass dance in Washington, D.C. After courageously escaping several times to watch Game Six over the course of the night, the chaperones finally held me hostage where I was supposed to be. With no hope of escaping, I was left to find out that the Yankees won the World Series when the DJ cut in to Billy Idol's "Mony Mony" to make the announcement.

Flash forward 13+ years to tonight. Instead of a high school leadership conference dance I'm trapped in a sales meeting when the first pitch is thrown. As I anxiously await for it to end, I follow the first two innings on my phone with GameCast. As the meeting wraps and I begin walking to the hotel bar, I get notification of Hideki Matsui's home run. By the time I settle in with a few Fat Tire Ales, the Yankees are up 4-1. As Robinson Cano stepped into the box to lead off the bottom of the fourth, a familiar tune came on as the bar music. Billy Idol's "Mony Mony". The same song from 13 years earlier. No joke.

I'm not a superstitious man, but I do believe that sometimes life taps you on the shoulder as it tries to get your attention. At that point the cautious optimism I had as I finally got watch Game Five starting with the top of the ninth, the same optimism I've felt the past two days knowing my favorite and most-trusted starting pitcher from my years as a fan was taking the mound tonight, turned to a cool confidence. Stupid, I know. The very idea of which is something I'll surely scoff at in the years to come. But at that moment, short of the Almighty Himself offering me a glimpse to the future, I don't think there's anything that could have assured me of the future more than that.

I suppose it's only appropriate that after combining music and Yankee baseball here all season long that the final night of the longest baseball season ever would end with a bit of throwaway music enveloping me in a sense of assurance. I'm not sure what more to say at this point. I just have a dumb smile across my face that won't seem to go away, and for lack of the YES Network out here in the Windy City, I'm stuck watching ESPN over and over again.

Thank you to Jay for extending the offer to me to join this little party back in May. Thanks to all our blogofriends all across the internets for all the links and the help in growing our readership here. Most of all, thanks to all of you Fackers for reading and commenting and giving us a reason to keep doing this day after day. If it weren't for you, there wouldn't be much point to this. Thank you, and we promise to do what we can to keep stoking the hot stove until we can utter the second sweetest sentence I know: "Pitchers and catchers report".

I can't hope to top Jay's choice of Old Blue Eyes as the final out was recorded. I suppose I could go with Billy Idol given my above stories, but that wouldn't quite fit our tastes here. Instead, me and my goofy smile will once again turn to the band that I leaned on so many times over the course of the year. As we all say the sweetest sentence I know - "Yankees win the World Series", and the team dog piles in the clubhouse, and the nine year World Series "drought" is gone - there's nothing left to do but smile, smile, smile. See you at the parade Fackers.


  1. Thanks to you guys for a wonderful season.

    As a college student who had to watch the last 2 months of the season away from wonderful YES HD coverage, I relied on your postgame wrapups to carry me through the closing of the season.

    Hats off to you guys and the 2009 New York Yankee World Champions!

  2. that's too funny about Mony Mony (u know some haters will say Money Money LMAO) ... bet you didn't know that in 2003, Matsui hit a grand slam in his first game at old Yankee Stadium -- and just like Game 6 of the 2009 World Series, the Yankees won 7-3 and Pettitte got the victory. (Source: the Associated Press. Google it baby!)

  3. TJ - Thanks for reading. The wrapups can be a bitch at times, so it's good to hear that you enjoyed them.

    Anon - Matsui came in with a bang and went out with one - 6 RBIs that day and 6 last night. This game did more for his legacy as a baseball player than can be put into words. He was a solid player and a consummate professional but this World Series has granted him legend status both here and especially in Japan.

  4. 27!

    Cheers to you, Matt. Believe it or not, I have yet to see the Yankees lose while I'm in attendance at the Stadium--including my 3 visits to the New House--so I know a little about superstitions. May you be away from home for every Yankees World Series ever.

    Oh, and "sometimes life taps you on the shoulder as it tries to get your attention" is a great line, my friend.

  5. Now that you mention it again, I've never been home during a clincher either. College in Philadelphia for '96 and '99. Florida for '98. Charleston, SC for '00. And now Bismarck, ND for '09.

    Great, now I'm going to be superstitious with this stuff as well.

    Oh, and three hours of sleep never felt so good!

  6. It's been fun reading your posts all season, Matt. Our family has many things that draw us together, not the least of which is our love for the Yankees. I'm glad you and I were fortunate enough to attend a few games together during this incredible season. --Uncle Pete

  7. In today's Washington Post, sports writer T.Boswell talks about earlier Matsui-vs-Pedro matchups, saying "baseball just adores irony and symmetry". (referring to last night and the 2003 ALCS. Matsui and the Yankees had the last laugh that year but obviously 2009 is way better)

    I'd say "cosmic symmetry"

    Baseball rocks!

  8. Great site guys, I wish I had found it sooner. Btw, I have lived through 7 Yankee World Series titles. First one in 1977. I'm old.

  9. Discovering this blog this season has greatly enhanced my emjoyment of the Yankees this year. You guys do a great job keeping it objective (for fans), humorous and insightful.

  10. The Yankees are #1, Matt, and nothing will ever take that away. What a great feeling. I can't say enough about Matsui, his tremendous game last night, his World Series MVP well earned, and what a great Yankee he is. Mariano actually LOWERED his career playoff ERA with a 0.56 ERA over 16 innings this year. The greatest of all time by a mile.

    I am going to smile from ear to ear for a long time over this.


  11. Wow guys. It feels fantastic that the world of baseball is finally able to spin on its correct axis. 27 titles over 106 years is something of awe. This is a wonderful francise and it is made even better by the notion that New York has become the center of this sport. Its easy to love NY. If you don't, it's really deep rooted jealousy against your own favorite team. The new York Yankees are both heroes and villains. I really beleive that the World Series takes on extra special meaning if you beat the Yankees to earn it.

    I bleed pinstripe blue, and I am thrilled this site exists. You guys are as emotionally invested in this team as anyone can be. Your blend of baseball knowledge, sarcasm, insight, and respect are unmatched by any site or newspaper that I have come across.
    Thank you for keeping up with this so consistently, guys. I'm a rookie Facker this postseason, but I'm with you guys even when my contract is up. Thanks, Fackers.

  12. I said it last night on Twitter and I’ll say it again. I love the Fack Youk guys. This blog has become one of my favorite things to do every day. Not living in the area anymore I miss the local coverage (YES, Daily News, etc.) but you guys have done a great job capturing the best stories and the best angles. Plus I love music.

    Also I’m right there with you on the superstitions – had to go back to the same bar, with the same people, order the same food and the same drinks for the good mojo. Plus I didn’t kill a spider in my shower yesterday morning to avoid bad karma!

    I know we still have the parade tomorrow but…how many days til pitchers and catchers report?

  13. I've got a superstition for you, Matt. I recorded game 1 on my DVR...we all know how that one turned out. I was at game 2 so I didn't record it. I didn't record games 3 & 4 because I didn't want to have to sit through all the idiot Phillies fans, but I did record game 5 because I figured it would be the clincher. Again, a loss. Want to guess whether or not I recorded last night's game?