Of course they are.
People keep asking me where the line is in NJ that separates out the Phillies from the Yankees fans. I don't see it, although this guy in Delaware is feeling the heat. And people in N.E. Pennsylvania have divided loyalties.
What I do hear is a lot of trash talking.
It reminds me of when my friend and I drove down to Baltimore to play wheelchair tennis against a pack of wheelchair basketball players and proceeded to take them to school. The trash talk was flying, left and right. There were excuses:
"Just learned how to serve" "Haven't played tennis much - basketball's my game" etc. etc.
and then there were pitiful - I'm telling you pitiful - attempts by these hulking paraplegic guys to flatter me into giving them "a break" which meant points. Line calls against them resulted in faces only a five year old would make.
And the trash talk! It flew over the net more than the tennis balls. There were insults, jabs, and jokes of every kind. There was no way to concentrate on a point. It was better to just laugh my way through it , knowing for sure that when I served a ball they couldn't hit, attention to an airplane overhead would be called. Apparently none of these guys ever played a match in Flushing NY, where planes seem to dive bomb you in the middle of a match.
In the end, the trash talk was just a distraction, as it always is. And it will be the same this year with the World Series.
So I don't want to trash talk, but.... I must point out that the Yankees don't even have a mascot , although they used to have one. Guess what it's name was?
The Phillies have the Phanatic. Been around a long time and important sources say he's the best mascot in baseball. Check this out:
"From the top of his neon-green head to the tip of his bubble-toed size 20 shoes, the Phillie Phanatic is every inch the best mascot in the business. He's as much Philadelphia as cheesesteaks, the Liberty Bell, and Rocky Balboa. Yo, Adrian, I love dat green guy!"
- USA Today
"Baseball's best mascot."
- Tim McCarver, TV analyst
Ha. Dandy. Even the Yankee fans beat their mascot up.
And it costs more to see the Yankees. Double, some say. The Yankees have the highest payroll, the Phillies seventh. And still- no mascot? Tsk, tsk.
The Yankees fans are smug. They say their team has won the series 26 times...but the Phillies won last year.
The Yankee fans are so desperate that they are mocking their opponents as Frillies. It just gives the Phillies and their fans more motivation. Remember, when it comes to fan loyalty:
...while Yankees fans filled only 88 percent of the seats in a brand-new stadium, Phillies attendance was 102 percent of its seating capacity at Citizens Bank Park
That's because the Phillies are the champs.
(Feel free to vote in this poll which dubs the series the "Turnpike Tussle".)