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Yankees' loss isn't necessarily a D'backs win

The World Series is over. Oh God, the World Series is over. What am I going to do now at night? Homework? Or, even worse, watch hockey? Well, while I wait for what might be a long, long time for my buddy Nate Newton to get here, I offer my final take on the 2001 World Series.

This weekend, many of you witnessed what was probably the greatest and most exciting World Series of our lifetimes, if not ever. Sunday night's Game 7 was the most watched baseball game in 10 years, since the 1991 Twins' thrilling 10-inning Game 7 victory.

Game 7 provided more drama than a high school prom. It offered much more excitement than wondering how many lame Emmys "The West Wing" would win. And it created more unexpected reactions than Anne Heche showing up on your doorstep in a psychological stupor.

There was something uniquely interesting, however, about the end of the game. Maybe you noticed everyone around you saying, "The Yankees lost! I can't believe the Yankees lost!" Perhaps everyone was in shock that closer Mariano Rivera actually made an error and gave up the tying and game-winning runs. But the only person I heard say "The Diamondbacks won!" might have been Joe Buck, the Fox Sports play-by-play guy, immediately after the game was over.

It's not that I expected people to go running naked through the streets screaming, "Thank God the D'backs won. I was so worried about what was going to happen to poor Byung-Hyun Kim if they had lost." But seriously, the prevailing thought around the country, seemingly, was that the Yankees had lost the series, not that Arizona had won.

But why all the negative reactions? Was this truly a backlash against the only "America's Team" left since the Cowboys fell into a world of sex, drugs and mediocrity? Or was the lack of a fourth-straight world championship for the Yanks just that shocking to an incredulous sports world?

I thought people were rooting for the Yankees after what had happened to New York on Sept. 11. But by Game 7, those warm, unified feelings had been replaced by the usual, anti-Yankee chatter. It was once again the typical theme that no one could beat the Yanks, except themselves.

No one is exclaiming the fact that, prior to Sunday, Phoenix had been the only urban area with all four major professional sports and no championship to show for it. No one has complimented the Diamondbacks on their triumphant return from possible elimination and the heartbreaks of Kim's failures in Games 4 and 5.

Outside of Tim McCarver's on-air analysis, very little has been made of the Yankees' lack of offense. As a team, they hit just .183 for the series. They also scored only 14 runs in seven games. "Mr. November," Derek Jeter, had only one RBI in the series - his walk-off home run in Game 4.

Yet, this lack of offensive production was enough to get the Yankees to a Game 7 and convince the majority of the nation that they were going to win. It seemed the mystique just was too much for the Diamondbacks to overcome, no matter the 15-2 shellacking that had occurred on Saturday.

But this is how we have come to view the world of baseball. Years when other teams win world championships are becoming footnotes in the history of the Yankees. The mystique and aura of the Yankee spending machine will not just disappear because of this one loss.

So, Yankees fans, take it as a compliment when the entire world celebrates your loss. Cheer along and congratulate the Diamondbacks on their unforgettable victory. Because in 20 years, when another Yankee dynasty is in jeopardy of having its World Series winning streak ended, they won't remember the year the Diamondbacks won. They will remember 2001 as the year the Yankees lost.

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