Yankees defeat Mariners
4 games to 1
|Game||Date||Winning Team||Losing Team|
|1||Oct. 17||NYY 4||SEA 2|
|2||Oct. 18||NYY 3||SEA 2|
|3||Oct. 20||SEA 14||NYY 3|
|4||Oct. 21||NYY 3||SEA 1|
|5||Oct. 22||NYY 12||SEA 3|
Managers: Torre, Joe, NYY; Piniella, Lou, SEA
MVP: Pettitte, Andy
ALDS: New York over Oakland (3 games to 2); Seattle over Cleveland (3 games to 2)
Not only were the Yankees three-time defending World Series champions, but they seemed oblivious at this point to the identity of any opponent in their path. As emotions in the month after the 9/11 terrorist attacks continued to overshadow all events in New York, the Yankees played with a unique focus and rode their widespread public support. The Mariners had won 116 games, the most since the 1906 Cubs, but it was never really apparent in this ALCS.
The Yankees won the first two games at Safeco Field. Lou Piniella, the Mariners' manager and former Yankees outfielder, tried to give his squad a psychological lift when he guaranteed the series would return to Seattle. Although Seattle would win Game 3 in a blowout behind 20-game winner Jamie Moyer, it was one of those guarantees that don't look so great in hindsight.
The Yankees were determined to avoid what would have been another trip across the country to Safeco Field for Game 6, and instead headed to Phoenix for Game 1 of the World Series.
Andy Pettitte provided the bookend victories in this series, continuing to cement a reputation as a big-game postseason pitcher. He combined with Mariano Rivera on a four-hitter in a 4-2 win in the opener, and Pettitte left Game 5 with a 9-0 lead in a game the Yankees would win, 12-3.
New York clinched its fourth straight pennant on Monday, Oct. 22, with Yankees manager Joe Torre going over to the Yankee Stadium box seats and bringing New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani to join the celebration on the mound.
Rivera was instrumental in all four Yankees victories, and Bernie Williams and Paul O'Neill combined for five homers.
For the Mariners, AL MVP Ichiro Suzuki had hit .350 during the regular season but was contained in the ALCS, going 4-for-18 for a .222 average. Seattle may have been the best team to not win a pennant, but it will always be important to remember the larger circumstances that propelled the Yankees during September and October of their 2001 run.