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World Series 2001
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11/04/2001 10:50 AM ET
Colangelo questioned about gamesmanship
By Troy E. Renck
It looked like Joe Torre was upset that the Diamondbacks' DJ played ''New York, New York'' after Game 6 ended. But during the postgame press conference, Torre said he didn't have a problem with it.
PHOENIX -- Saturday's last out, baseball's version of an exclamation point, seemed innocuous to the ears at first. Like many before it, there would be fireworks, throaty screams and a line of handshakes from the home team.

But this scene had a different feel thanks to some clever audio. After Arizona finished its bare-fisted 15-2 pummeling of the Yankees, the speakers throughout The BOB blared "New York, New York."

For a few notes anyway, until a scratching sound erased the track, leaving "Celebration" ricocheting off the walls. It was rather clever, leaving smirks on the faces of fans who picked up on the jab.

Because this Series involves the Yankees, which rhymes with controversy, the event didn't go unnoticed. After the win, Diamondbacks Managing General Partner Jerry Colangelo was forced to face the music during a short interrogation.

"Gamesmanship? It wasn't gamesmanship," Colangelo explained in between a few congratulatory handshakes. "It's promotions people having a lot of fun. This is supposed to be a little fun."

At issue was the alleged reaction of Yankees Manager Joe Torre. According to a few reporters, he glared at the tomfoolery, leading to rumors that he was upset. In his postgame press conference, he said otherwise.

"They do that in Baltimore, too," said Torre, whose team has been outscored 28-3 in its three loss at Arizona. "The fans are having fun. You know this is their ballpark. The Stadium is our ballpark, and it's the World Series. So there's a lot going on."

A quick scan around the ballpark is a testimonial to the passion. During Game 6, fans were waving white pom-poms, unleashing unflattering chants and wearing shirts that, in some cases, screamed "Yank This!"


Still, Colangelo bristled at the implication he was playing mind games with New York or in anyway showing them up.

"The fact is that we got bounced pretty good back there and had to hear a lot of that song while we were in New York," Colangelo said. "It was, like, deafening and monotonous. Hey, I am a big Sinatra fan and I am not sure I will ever listen to that song again. And I have been a fan my entire life. If anyone takes offense to that I say give me a break and get a life. It's all about having a good time. Does that make sense?"

His organization's DJ effectively cleared of conspiracy charges, Colangelo began fielding more comfortable questions. Like, is he ecstatic to be here, his club playing on baseball's final day? Yes, it's what he wished for -- to play the Yankees and top them in a Game 7.

"But I said that I wanted it to come down to the ninth inning and two outs," he recalled. "I am not sure I want that kind of conclusion anymore. I just want a victory. If we don't get it, as much as we have accomplished, it will be unfulfilling if we can't close it out. Remember, I waited 17 years between appearances in the NBA Finals. When your stars align, you have to seize the opportunity because you are never assured of getting back."

Troy E. Renck is a reporter for