Five reasons the Phillies could still win

SI.com’s Jon Heyman compiles five reasons why the Phillies can still pull off an upset and rally to beat the Yankees in the World Series.

Here are his top 3:

1. The Phillies aren’t called the Fightin’ Phils for no reason. And they aren’t the defending champs for no reason, either. As Yankees GM Brian Cashman said, “We’re playing the world champions, and it’s going to take a world-championship effort to beat them.” Being down 3-2 isn’t going to faze the Phils. They create comebacks without the fanfare and cream pies that have marked the Yankees’ wonderful season, but the Phillies did post a National League-high 43 come-from-behind wins. Manager Charlie Manuel considered talking to them as a team before Game 5, but Jimmy Rollins said Manuel merely threw up his hands when it became clear the Phillies were as focused as ever. According to Rollins, the only major change they made going into Game 5 was to remove Jay-Z’s Empire State of Mind from their pregame clubhouse soundtrack. (Not sure if Elton John’s Philadelphia Freedom is a worthy replacement, but New York-based songs are definitely not the way to go.)

2. They are road warriors. The Phillies were a baseball-best 48-33 on the road this year.

3. Chase Utley is currently unstoppable. Reggie Jackson couldn’t be found for the first time this Series on Monday, but it would have been interesting to see what he would have had to say about Utley tying Jackson’s World Series record with five home runs. Utley’s five have come in one less game (five to six) and mostly against left-handers (four of five were vs. lefties, three vs. CC Sabathia). “He’s not missing pitches. He’s tough,” Sabathia said. “He’s not missing, so you have to make (all) quality pitches.”

Not to be a downer, but it’s tough to beat any team three times in a row, especially the Yankees. I realize the Phillies are a quarter of the way there, but winning two in a row at Yankee Stadium will be tough, especially with CC Sabathia on the bump in Game 7.

We’ll see though – I know a lot of casual baseball fans will be rooting for them to knock off the “Evil Empire.”

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