Title Puts Yanks in 27th Heaven
NEW YORK - The New York Yankees might be in a new home, with almost an entire new cast of players, but they made it feel like old times Wednesday night.
The Yankees won their 27th World Series title, dethroning the Philadelphia Phillies 7-3, bringing their tradition across the street to new Yankee Stadium and adding another title for ailing owner George Steinbrenner.
"We wanted to show an appreciation to George Steinbrenner and just what he meant," Hall of Famer and Yankees special adviser Reggie Jackson said before the game. "The sons, Hal and Hank, are running things, but the DNA remains the same. There's a gold standard here."
The Yankees, winning their first title since 2000, took care of business in retro style:
They knocked out Pedro Martinez after four innings.
They had a historic night by designated hitter Hideki Matsui, who tied a 49-year-old Series record with six RBI and won the MVP award.
Starter Andy Pettitte, one of three Yankees still around from the 1996 World Series winners, got his record 18th postseason victory.
And Mariano Rivera, who along with Derek Jeter was also on the '96 team, pitched the final 1 innings.
Matsui tied Bobby Richardson's 1960 record by the fifth inning, and his eight RBI in the Series were the most by a Yankee since Jackson in 1978. Matsui hit a two-run homer in the second inning, a two-run single in the third and a two-run double in the fifth.
Pettitte, pitching on three days' rest in the postseason for the first time in six years, continued his playoff superiority. He is undefeated in his last eight postseason starts, the longest streak by an active pitcher. He gave up four hits and three runs in 5 innings but walked five batters.