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World Series 2001
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11/05/2001 01:04 PM ET
Reader: 2001 postseason hits and misses
By Heather Reader
MLB.com
Left Field This postseason has left me with a myriad of questions. How bitter are Cubs fans right now, having seen "The Ex-Cub Factor" blown out of the water? When is the last time that all four pro leagues from the World Series cities have played in the same weekend? (Phoenix was 1-3 this weekend while NYC was 1-3-1 with the Rangers playing to a tie on Saturday. But the Knicks should be counted against twice for losing to the Bulls.)

Will there be even more adult dancers in Arizona named Mystique and Aura? How can people in their right mind really chant "Yankees suck" when they've won three World Championships in a row? When the Bank One crowd goes nuts at their introduction, does the hair on the back of Randy Johnson's and Curt Schilling's mullets stand on end?

Having attended nine playoff games this postseason -- all five of the Seattle and Cleveland matchups and then the four World Series games in Phoenix, there are a few things that I look forward to leaving behind, but many more that I will want to take with me.

I want to go where ... I don't have to pick the turkey off a sandwich to make it vegetarian ... I'm not getting bonked in the head by TV cameras or being yanked back my some random fan grabbing my credential ... I don't have to be constantly tempted by Rice Krispy treats, french fries and Ben and Jerry's (wait, I eat those things at home, too).

I don't want to ... have to worry about getting sprayed with ballpark goo while the workers are cleaning up ... have to constantly be asked if I want to sign up for a credit card to receive a free World Series towel ... have to wait 20 minutes for an elevator that will take me up one level ... break out a calculator to figure out what time zone I'm in ... see fans that need to be prompted by a Jumbotron to make some noise ... read another shirt that makes reference to Yanks and Johnsons.

But these are outweighed by what I will miss.

  • Mark "The Human Quote Machine" Grace finally winning a World Series
  • Strawberries with whipped cream at Bank One
  • Great pitching with 20-game winners
  • Peter Gammons' pigeon-toed stance while doing his live shots
  • "USA!" chants
  • "PAUL O-NEE-EL! PAUL O-NEE-EL!"
  • Jesse McGuire. How can you not love a guy who isn't afraid to show his emotions by hopping up and down after playing the coolest rendition of the national anthem on the trumpet?
  • New York Policemen and Firefighters
  • Don Zimmer, the human cheeks
  • Wide-eyed kids with their baseball gloves
  • Rudy Giuliani and Senator John McCain wearing Yankee and Arizona baseball hats
  • Random celebrity sightings in the stands
  • Bunting, as in suicide squeezes and as in the red, white and blue stuff hanging around the stadiums
  • Andy Pettitte stepping in against Randy Johnson
  • Roger Clemens stepping in against Curt Schilling
  • Yankees PA man Bob Sheppard
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Fresh-cut grass and the designs pressed into them
  • Infield singles
  • Fans who come early to catch BP homers
  • Players who sign autographs next to the dugout
  • American flags
  • Bottom of the ninth, two-out home runs
  • Bottom of the ninth, one-out singles that win the World Series
  • Watching one of the cooks, an older gentleman, cry unabashedly at the sight of the D-Backs win
  • Finally a National League team winning it all again.

    Heather Reader, lifelong Cubs fan, is a reporter for MLB.com.