Watching the Yankees celebrate in person last night was exhilarating. It got me thinking about the guys we've gotten to know, who 'deserves' it the most, and who I'm most happy for.
For some reason, I was immediately most happy for Melky Cabrera. The guy is a bundle of energy that always has fun playing the game - but more than that, I feel like I've literally watched him grow up: from his disastrous start in centerfield in Fenway Park in 2005 (at the age of 20) to playing in his first World Series. It felt like watching my nephew grow up (is that strange?).
After him was Robbie Cano. Y'all have to remember this wasn't just the first time for Melky and Cano in the World Series, but also their first time in the ALCS. They debuted in 2005, so missed the Yanks consecutive LCS trips in the previous seasons, and saw their team lose in the first round every year (or miss the playoffs entirely) until this season.
Then there's Alexander Emmanuel, the poster-boy for overpaid, under-performing athletes. Someone at SI (either Tom Verducci or Jon Heyman) called out A-Rod (and CC Sabathia) for being 0-7 in their team's chances to clinch the ALCS. Alex ended that by hitting good enough to be the MVP runner-up (.429/.567/.952).
Joba, Hughes, Coke and Robertson: they all played integral parts in the playoffs, and never experienced a postseason series win. Now they each have two under their belt.
CC Sabathia pitched like the perennial Cy Young contender he is, (along with A-Rod) dispelling the 'can't perform in the clutch' stigma he acquired over the last few seasons.
Joe Girardi has now gone farther in his Yankee managerial career than Joe Torre has in L.A. He certainly made some questionable decisions, but all's well that ends well. For as bad as he might've been, his team is in the World Series.
Nick Swisher, the clubhouse pressure-reliever, and who is as fun to watch as any player I can remember, is also getting his first taste of late October baseball.
Who are you happiest for?