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June 14, 2000

The Daily Prospectus

Take the 7 to Grand Central...

by Joe Sheehan

One of my stranger quirks is a fondness for seeing things pushed into disarray, for speculating about the answer to the question, "What happens if...?" Not in a dangerous way, mind you, but in real simple, basic, harmless ways.

So the plan to have the Yankees and Mets make up Sunday's rainout as part of a day-night, Queens-Bronx doubleheader in September has my head spinning. I don't think it's a bad idea, at least from a fan or media standpoint: the teams have one common off-day the rest of the year, and it's a terribly inconvenient one for the Yankees to try and squeeze in a game. A doubleheader during the lone remaining series between the two teams is about the only option.

Once the doubleheader becomes the only solution, then the question turns to home/away considerations. Obviously, a day/night doubleheader is essential, because no one wants to give up a lucrative date between these two teams. And if you're going to have a day/night doubleheader, why not try and give the Yankees the home game they might otherwise lose? Presto...history in the making. Yes, day/night doubleheaders make for an incredibly long day for the players, but at least they'll have something to do--travel--between these two games.

Of course, now that the plan is in place, my head starts spinning with ways in which it can go awry. What happens if it rains that day? What happens if the first game goes 16 innings? 21 innings? Heck, I haven't had this much fun with something like this since the end of the 1998 season, when there was a chance the San Francisco Giants would have to play four games in four cities in four days, with three flights in between.

I'm sure none of the potentially bad things will happen, so I can worry about a bigger problem: as a native New Yorker who was thinking about going back to visit family and friends in September anyway, I now have to wonder how the heck I am going to get tickets for these games. With the Yankees looking like they'll be in a dogfight all season and the Mets a good bet to hang around the wild-card race into September, it will be one of the greatest New York sports days ever.

With or without Sammy Sosa.

Joe Sheehan can be reached at jsheehan@baseballprospectus.com.

Joe Sheehan is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
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