2008/09/23

Love-Hate Rivalry

There are only a few real passions that most men have room for in their lives. Women, obviously, top the list. Then followed in no particular order by food, beer, and sports teams. You can love many women, have dozens of favorite foods and enjoy beers from around the globe. But to love one sports team means you have to hate another. So an Eagles fan must loath the Giants and Cowboys. And a Phillies fan must curse the Mets.

So why, as the Phillies close in on their 2nd consecutive NL East title, do I have this feeling that I actually want to see the Mets in the playoffs. I should be enjoying every second of New York’s annual September swoon. But instead, I go against all logic, and secretly hope that they grab the Wild Card.

On the surface this doesn’t make much sense. And believe me, it keeps me tossing and turning at night. But let me explain. The Phillies and Mets have a hated rivalry that is missing one crucial element: a postseason showdown.

All the great ones have done it. Where would the Yankees-Red Sox rivalry be without Aaron Boone’s homerun or the Red Sox historic 3 games to none rally? The postseason clearly makes a grudge greater.

A weekend series in June is nice, but a Phillies vs. Mets NLCS could stoke the flames of this heated rivalry. And wouldn’t it be sweeter if the Phillies slaughtered the Mets on the way to a World Series Championship!

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