- Dick Vitale, College Basketball analyst
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I know that basketball season is around the corner, and I can't wait! Before you know it, Midnight Madness will be here. It will captivate fans on college campuses all over America. College basketball is all about excitement!
Let's face reality. For sports fans, there is excitement with the baseball playoffs getting underway. The race for the World Series will create its own excitement.
I know that TV bigwigs would love to see the Yankees and Dodgers in the World Series. Imagine Joe Torre going back to the new stadium, the one that has photos representing the history of the Yankees all over it. There isn't a single photo of Torre; wouldn't it be special if he went back there with the world championship at stake? How wild would it be to see Manny Ramirez at Yankee Stadium with everything on the line?
TV execs would love to see East vs. West, two traditional powers, the big market teams.
Do you think the Bronx would be rocking?
I will tell you why that won't happen. Think about guys named Carpenter and Wainwright. The Cardinals and Tony LaRussa have an edge in the starting rotation against Los Angeles in the NLDS. I think St. Louis will march on.
You can talk about the Angels and Red Sox, but Brian Cashman has done a great job building a winner in the Bronx. This team is about success and the additions of C. C. Sabathia, Mark Texieira and A. J. Burnett have made a big difference. Don't forget about the addition of Nick Swisher in right field, who has produced 28 home runs plus life and chemistry in the clubhouse.
This is a Yankee team destined for greatness. The infield is as good as it gets with Teixeira's glove and bat, plus A. Rod getting back to the 30-homer, 100-RBI mark for a 12th straight season. Then there is the dynamite combination of Derek Jeter and Robinson Cano; both guys had over 200 hits this season.
Think about the importance of Mariano Rivera in the closer's role … nobody is going to touch him. There are some good ones like Jonathan Papelbon and Huston Street who were solid this season. Trust me, Rivera is the crème de la crème of closers. There is only one Rivera.
When it is all said and done, the Yankees and Cardinals will meet in the World Series. Joe Girardi gets his first World Series championship as a manager with the Bronx Bombers prevailing in six games.
1hBy Ian O'Connor