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Anatomy Of The Subway Series

It's an easy, convenient storyline that the New York Yankees can only score runs when they hit home runs and the New York Mets are now the scrappy Little Team That Could, but the Subway Series was playing out that way until the bottom of the seventh inning in Sunday's game. That's when the Bombers stepped out of character with a flurry of bloops and bleeders, with a sacrifice bunt thrown in, and plated a whopping eight runs to give them an insurmountable six run lead. Up until that moment (well, it was more than a moment since it took about a half hour for it to transpire), the series was being played as if the script were written beforehand.

The Mets won the pitchers' duel on Friday night, when R.A. Dickey was just a little bit better than Freddy Garcia, and they rode the Justin Turner train to win the game. Each team produced a routine fly ball/new Yankee Stadium home run, so Turner's moment was the difference. The key play in the first game, though, was Jose Reyes' diving stop of Alex Rodriguez's grounder up the middle to save a run and end a potential rally.

The second game featured a predictable formula: The home-run happy Yankees + Chris Capuano who has a penchant for giving up the long ball = four Bomber homers and a 7-3 victory. The game began looking like it might be the setting for another A.J. Burnett implosion, but he rebounded, composed himself and kept his team in the game. The key moment in this contest was the performance by David Robertson, who got two big outs by striking out Carlos Beltran and inducing Jason Bay to pop out to first. Forget Rafael Soriano, maybe Roberston should be the heir apparent to Mariano Rivera. In fact, Yankee relievers didn't allow a run in the series. The highlight for the Mets was Turner setting a new club rookie record by driving in a run in his seventh consecutive game.

The finale was moving along as if the Mets would fight and claw their way to another low-scoring win, until the wheels fell off in that fateful inning. Mike Pelfrey was left in the game a little too long, and the key moment in this one came when the Met pitcher hit Francisco Cervelli with a pitch while the catcher was attempting to lay down a sacrifice bunt. When a team is giving up an out, you take it. You don't almost the batter in the head. Everything went wrong for the Mets and everything went right for the Yankees from that moment on.

Like last year's Subway Series, the crowds were sedate, and the buzz seems to be fading from this matchup, now in its 15th year. No pop flies were dropped in the making of this series, and there really weren't any memorable or signature plays. It was just another three games out of 162 for both teams. The Yankees won two out of three, which is what they were supposed to do, while the Mets took one on the road. Interleague play is here to stay, but the new-car smell is beginning to fade.