The New York-Boston rivalry continues to get more intense. With the Giants and Patriots ready to finally square off for the NFL title, the pressure for one city to dominate the “Northeast corridor” remains strong.
In baseball, the Red Sox Nation always claimed that they were the arch-enemy of the Yankees and Red Sox CEO Larry Lucchino even called the Yanks, the “Evil Empire.” But, it was never much of a rivalry because the Red Sox never won anything, while the Yankees piled up 26 world championships. When the Red Sox made it back to the World Series, in 1986, they lost to the—New York Mets, adding insult to the city that already had a chip on its shoulder and felt a bit sorry for themselves.
Since 2004, the axis has shifted with the center of baseball now residing in Beantown. The Red Sox have two world titles since 2004 and now, their fans are no longer scared of bad things happening in the postseason. The Yankees, though titleless since 2000, still make the playoffs every single year (since 1995) and something tells me they’re due to win another title.
The New York Mets like to think that they are a major part in “The Tale of Two Cities,” but they’ve usually been on the outside looking in. They have had their moments: the 1969 and 1986 world titles, the 1973 and 2000 National League titles, the exciting runs to the National League Championship Series in 1999 and 2006. But, for the most part, they have seen the Red Sox and Yankees garner most of the headlines and the attention that goes with it.
That has changed now as the Mets have become the third team in this two city tale. The Yankees and Red Sox rank numbers one and two in payroll, but with the $137.5 million contract given to lefty Johan Santana, the Mets are now right there. The Mets desperately want to win a World Series and want to win before the Yankees bag number 27, however their fans always believed that Met ownership would often come up a bit short when going after big name players, like a Santana. This changed Friday. Whether Santana is worth the money and whether the Mets can put it altogether and win a world title of course remains to be seen. There certainly is no guarantee that Santana’s arrival assures future success.
The Mets, though, looked poised to get over the top and will probably be the favorite to win the National League pennant in 2008. Something tells me the Red Sox or Yankees will be waiting for them