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World Series 2001
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10/12/2001 03:36 AM ET
Damon: This feels good, but it's not over
Damon tripled in the ninth inning on Thursday.

FIRST PERSON: JOHNNY DAMON
By Johnny Damon (as told to OaklandAthletics.com's Mychael Urban)

Oakland A's center fielder Johnny Damon, a playoff rookie, is providing for MLB.com an exclusive postseason diary. This is his entry from Thursday, after Game 2 of his team's American League Division Series against the Yankees.

NEW YORK -- I just ate lunch with my wife today before the game. We got off to a late start because we had to pack and get ready to head back West, so we kept it pretty low-key again. But we had fun, and I kept me relaxed for the game.

Last night was fun, too. A couple of friends who run a bar in Kansas City sent me a bucket of beers at the hotel to congratulate me. They also wanted to show that they support my decision to turn down a contract offer in Kansas City, which opened the door for me to get traded. They've always felt that I was a winner and they like the way I compete, and this was their way of thanking me for playing hard every day for them. I thought that was very classy, very nice.

The game tonight was tough, but we feel great about being up 2-0. It's an honor to come in here and beat the Yankees two games. The fans were tough. They stuck with them until the very last pitch. This is a very good ballclub that we're beating, but we're just playing very well right now.

We're by no means overconfident. We know that the Yankees have put together nice winning streaks in the past, so we're happy about our performance here, but we know that our job isn't done. We would like to beat Mike Mussina on Saturday. We need one more game against them, and then we can relax for a couple days.

I think I'm gonna have some gray hairs before it's all over with. These games have been very intense. One pitch can be the difference in the ballgame, and tonight was a perfect example.

It was very gratifying to score that run late in the game tonight. All of these games are nail-biters, and to be able to step across home plate, knowing that I could be the difference in the ballgame, it makes you feel real good. That's what Oakland got me for, and hopefully I'm not disappointing them.

Now we go home and try to wrap this up. It's going to be a nice party on that bus to the airport, but hopefully the plane won't be rocking too much.

The past two days have been amazing. This whole team has a lot of heart and pride, and we're doing whatever it takes. We know it's tough to come in and play here. That's no secret. But I think everyone can tell now how much the A's have grown up over the past year -- we're on the verge of knocking off the three-time champs.

Damon's Diary appears as told to Mychael Urban, the Site Reporter for OaklandAthletics.com.