Every now in then, Al Michaels' famous, "Do You Believe In Miracles?!" call comes into mind. Well tonight, that case has been displayed once more.
In one of the most bizarre finales Major League Baseball has ever seen, the New York Yankees defeated the New York Mets in the first inter-league brawl at the New Yankee Stadium creating history in the process. And bizarre it was.
The game began with the Yankees shooting off to a quick 1-0 lead in the second inning after a Robinson Cano solo dinger to right. However, the Mets would soon pull ahead, after Joba Chamberlain pitched a 40+ pitch third inning, making the score 2-1.
The Bronx Bombers would be resilient however, as Mark Teixeira made his case to be the American League All-Star starting first baseman after blasting a two-run shot to right-center, pushing the Yanks ahead 3-2. Chamberlain would soon exit the game.
Later on, former Yankee Gary Sheffield, who walked up to the plate with a series of monstrous boos, silenced the home crowd. After the Mets had tied the game. he barely pushed a three one shot fair down the right field line, giving the team a 6-3 lead.
The home run rally would continue however, as Derek Jeter would add a solo shot to right, then followed by a three-run birthday-boy shot by Hideki Matsui (now 35 years young).
The Mets did not give up however. After Yankees future Hall-of-Famer Mariano Rivera served up a go-ahead double to Mets third baseman David Wright, the Mets exited the 8th inning with an 8-7 lead. Enter Sandman Unlikelihood.
Mets superstar closer Francisco "K-Rod" Rodriguez would be given the ball to pitch the bottom of the ninth. After a Bret Gardner foul-out, the torched was passed to Derek Jeter. He quickly singled up the middle to put a runner on first.
After a rare failed pinch-hit appearance by the "injured" Johnny Damon, slugger Mark Teixeira was intentionally walked. With baserunners on first and second base, A-Rod would be set to face K-Rod.
After a battle of breaking balls, Alex received a fastball in the sweet spot. However, it would result into a lazy pop-up to second base to end the game. Or so the world thought.
With two outs, Jeter and Teixeira had been off with the crack of the bat. Alex, who had thrown his bat down in frustration, lazily jogged to first base. Despite this, Mets second baseman Luis Castillo drifted over to the fading ball in shallow right field.
Unable to deal with the wind and crowd noise, Castillo dropped the ball from his glove, enabling the two runners to score.
Little League-style. Mets fans live in disgust. Perhaps Yankees broadcaster Michael Kay described it best.
"And the Yankees win! Oh my goodness! He dropped the ball! What an ending! The Yankees win 9-8, in the most IMPROBABLE fashion!"
Do not count these teams out though everybody. Improbable? Possibly. After tonight however, nothing is impossible.