Yanks: Three-peat or De-feat?

Baseball in the Big Apple: Two Teams, One Ticket-Tape Parade

While the Yankees simply have too many horses not to win the East, maybe Mr. Riley should hold off on spending that royalty money. For the '00 Yankees to win it all, they will have to take three more playoff series—that would run their total to nine in a row. The record is eight consecutive series, held by the Yankees between 1927 and '41, and keep in mind that those were all best-of-seven. Remember that the Indians have bolstered their pitching with Yankee killer Chuck Finley (a/k/a Mr. Tawny Kitaen), while the Rangers may have actually improved by trading away a future Hall of Famer. And if last season proved anything, it's that Pedro Martinez, who's unhittable even when he stays in the strike zone, is the one pitcher who has the Yankees' number.

As the grass greens up and the lines get painted, the Yankees—older and more vulnerable though they may be—still seem like the best team in the majors. But although they romped through the playoffs the last two years, that's where the land mines lie. In October, a bad bounce, a bad call, an untimely slump can mean the difference between a seat in the dugout and a seat in a La-Z-Boy. So maybe Jostens should hold off on designing those World Series pinkie rings for just a little longer.

It's Up to You NY, NY: Mets

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