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'Newsday' Sports Columnist Steve Jacobson Discusses New York's Subway Series

Aired October 18, 2000 - 2:39 p.m. ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ANCHOR: No matter who wins, New York wins. Just ask a pumped-up Mayor Rudy Giuliani. His honor went public with his pick today on CNN.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MAYOR RUDY GIULIANI, NEW YORK: I think baseball fans respect the fact that you don't try to fool them and suggest, oh, I really root for two teams or three times. I've been a Yankee fan since I'm 4. I'm going to continue to be a Yankee fan. I'm going to be rooting very, very hard for them. But I can see as a baseball fan what a good team the Mets are and what a good team the Yankees are. These are two evenly matched teams. They've played each other six times this year. The Yankees won four out of six, but they were close games. Either team could have won those games.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ALLEN: Can you think of a better time for his honor?

Steve Jacobson is a sports columnist for "Newsday." He joins us from -- where else? -- New York.

Hello, Steve. Thanks for being with us.

STEVE JACOBSON, SPORTS COLUMNIST, "NEWSDAY": Good afternoon.

ALLEN: Good afternoon. How is it in New York today?

JACOBSON: It's raining. It's a good thing they're not trying to play today.

ALLEN: Well, I like the story we had before here, everybody pulling for either the Mets or the Yankees. You only had one person one said neither. How could they?

Do you think this will, overall, be a lot of fun for New Yorkers, or will we some sort of urban civil war break out?

JACOBSON: My daughter Nila (ph) said to me this morning, this is terrible.

ALLEN: Uh-oh. JACOBSON: She grew up with both teams. It's terrible. She doesn't know who to root for.

ALLEN: You think there's going to be a lot of that?

JACOBSON: Oh, I think there's a lot of fathers and sons and mothers and daughters and brothers conflicted as to who they're routing for in the same family over the dinner table.

ALLEN: Is everybody going to be able to get a ticket up there in New York?

JACOBSON: No, nobody's going to be able to get a ticket. Each team drew over 3 million fans this year, so that's 6 million people who are going to want tickets, and there are 50,000 in each ballpark. No, there are not enough tickets.

ALLEN: That's too bad? Well, listen, what do you think as far as the interest in this Subway Series? Certainly it's captivated New Yorkers. How do you think it will be for the country as a whole?

JACOBSON: I think there's a lot of fascination with New York and I think people pick up on the sense of rivalry or this hostility, if you wish. It's much more interesting to non-New York people than Seattle and Philadelphia would have been. But in New York, it's certainly the hot item.

ALLEN: Well, someone here in the CNN newsroom commented that it might do a lot for the game itself today already. We've seen some really neat flashbacks to the last Subway Series back in the '50s, a lot of historical footage. It kind of brings out the whole, I don't know, good feeling around America's favorite pastime. What do you think about that?

JACOBSON: There's a lot of nostalgia in New York for that era. I think the concept of the "Boys of Summer" has carried over a lot of years, and I think that people will pick up on that, the Yankees of Mickey Mantle and we go back to the Dodgers of Pee Wee Reese. And there's a link in history there that baseball has very clearly that I don't think any other sport has nearly as deeply.

ALLEN: Are you going to predict who might prevail?

JACOBSON: Predict. I think it's going to be very close. And I've spent enough time in baseball to know that it's very hard to predict. I think the Mets will probably win because they're on the rise and the Yankees are -- it's kind of a fading reign, but the Yankees still have an awful lot of magic.

ALLEN: Also, last hour during our story on that 1956 Subway Series, I noticed that the token for the subway was 5 cents in New York. Just curious what it is today for the folks?

JACOBSON: We don't use tokens at all, we use a Metro pass. You swipe it once and there are no more tokens. It used to be just a nickel and then came tokens. And now we use the new technology of the Easy Pass. It's the price of a slice of pizza.

ALLEN: All right, Steve, thanks so much. We thank you for joining us. Hope you have a lot of fun up there and hope the stock market settles down so you folks can just concentrate on baseball.

JACOBSON: OK.

ALLEN: Thanks.

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