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NYCFC Wins the MLS Cup. Who Are the Most Recent Yankee Stadium Champs?

On Saturday, the New York City Football Club (NYCFC) won the MLS Cup for the first time in its short history. A tenant of Yankee Stadium since their inception in 2015, letโ€™s look at the most recent championships that have happened at Yankee Stadium!

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๐—–๐—›๐—”๐— ๐—ฃ๐—œ๐—ข๐—ก๐—ฆ ๐Ÿ† pic.twitter.com/5x4Yfxu2yn โ€” New York City FC (@NYCFC) December 11, 2021

MLS Cup: NYCFC @ Portland Timbers

Date: December 11th, 2021

Sport: Soccer

An expansion team to the MLS, NYCFC saw their first season in 2015 and has been on a 6-year streak of making the playoffs since 2016. However, while theyโ€™ve been able to get into the postseason, the success has more-often-than-not continued to end early for the boys in blue.

After going 14-11-9 in the 2021 regular season, the New York City Football Club (NYCFC), the Yankee Stadium-based team was provided 51 points (3 per win, 1 per tie) and qualified 4th in the Eastern Conference for the MLS Cup Playoffs. With 7 teams per conference qualifying- and only the #1 seed getting a bye- NYCFC had to play (and win) 4 rounds of the playoffs to take home the championship. On their way there they defeated Atlanta United FC (2-0), the New England Revolution in penalty kicks (2[5]-2[3]), and the Philadelphia Union (2-1), en route to the final. Now, technically this goes against the spirit of this post as the final was played in Portland and not Yankee Stadium. However, theyโ€™re also the inspiration of this post so Iโ€™ll give them a pass.

In the MLS Cup final, NYCFC played against the Portland Timbers and got to a 1-0 lead in the first half off of a set-piece header at the 41st minute. The game looked locked too as the 2nd half came and went, though with an added (+4 minutes) for delays, the Portland Timbers took full advantage of the time and scored in the 94th minute to bring the game even. After an overtime period, the game stayed tied at 1-1 and it went down to penalties to decide the winner. NYCFC blocked and scored on the first round of PKโ€™s, blocked and missed the second round, and then allowed and scored in each of the 3rd and 4th sets. With a 3-2 advantage, NYCFC had the first kick of the fifth round, scored, and won the MLS Cup for the first time in their clubs history.

Etched in history ๐Ÿ† Watch the full match highlights from our first Championship ๐Ÿ—ฝ #ForTheCity pic.twitter.com/CHuh9xAHGE โ€” New York City FC (@NYCFC) December 12, 2021
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WE'RE THE 2009 WORLD SERIES CHAMPS! http://bit.ly/3silyK Be 1st to order what the #Yankees are wearing out on the field right now! โ€” New York Yankees (@Yankees) November 5, 2009

World Series: Philadelphia Phillies @ New York Yankees

Date: November 4th, 2009

Sport: Baseball

After the New York Yankees saw valuable players Mike Mussina, Bobby Abreu, and Jason Giambi leave the team, the brought in a powerhouse trio of free agent names: CC Sabathia, Mark Teixeria, and AJ Burnett to replace and bolster the team. This proved to be worthwhile as the Yankees took the AL East by storm with a 103-59 record. Some special moments during the regular season did happen: Derek Jeter breaking Lou Gehrigโ€™s Yankee hit record and Mariano Rivera collecting his 500th save.

In the postseason, the Yankees played the Minnesota Twins in the Division Series while taking all 3 games they played. They then played the Los Angeles Angels in the AL Championship Series, taking the series 4 games to 2. This set them up for a date with the defending World Series champion Philadelphia Phillies.

In the first two games at Yankee Stadium, the Yankees split, losing the first by a score of 6-1 powered by a 2 Home Run game by Chase Utley and taking the second by a score of 3-1 thanks to home runs by Mark Teixeria and Hideki Matsui. They then took 2 of 3 from the Phillies at their home ballpark by winning Games Three (8-5) and Four (7-4) but lost Game Five (8-6). That brought the series back to the Bronx and Yankee Stadium.

Game Six was magical. In the 2nd inning after a walk to A-Rod, Hideki Matsui hit a go-ahead 2-run Home Run. It was a lead they would not relinquish. In the 3rd inning, Matsui hit a 2-RBI single to score Derek Jeter and Johnny Damon giving the Yankees a 4-1 lead. In the 5th inning, the Yankees scored again from a Teixeria single (scoring Jeter) and a Matsui double (scoring Tex and A-Rod). These were Matsuiโ€™s 5th an 6th RBIโ€™s on the game and he earlier collected his 3rd Home Run in the Series as he hit to a .615/.643/1.385 in the most important 6 games of that season towards the World Series MVP.

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2019 New Era Pinstripe Bowl Champions ๐ŸŽ‰ #GoGreen pic.twitter.com/LNDI69zz7V โ€” Michigan State Football (@MSU_Football) December 28, 2019

Pinstripe Bowl: Michigan State vs. Wake Forest

Date: December 27th, 2019

Sport: College Football (FBS)

Held annually since 2010 (except for 2020, for obvious reasons) the Pinstripe Bowl is one of the many bowl games that college football teams in the FBS compete for every year. Currently, the teams in the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) and Big Ten are tied-in with the Pinstripe Bowl. Previously, teams from the American Conference, Big 12, Big East, and also Notre Dame have competed in the bowl game. For 2019, it was a contest between Michigan State from the Big 10 and Wake Forest from the ACC.

Michigan State came into the game with a 6-6 overall record and were 4-5 from games within the Big 10. Wake Forest came into the game with an 8-4 overall record and were 4-4 from games within the ACC.

During the game itself, Wake Forest started out with a 29-yard touchdown (and extra point), but Michigan State responded quickly with 10 unanswered points (including a Pick-6) to go up at the end of the first quarter. In the second quarter, things would go back-and-forth as Wake Forest scored a touchdown (14-10), Michigan State scored a touchdown (17-14), Wake Forest scored another touchdown (21-17), and Michigan hit a field goal before halftime (21-20). In the 3rd quarter, Michigan State threw a touchdown (27-21) which proved to be the final score of the game.

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Stadium Slugfest: Miguel Cotto vs. Yuri Foreman

Date: June 5th, 2010

Sport: Boxing

The first (and so far only) boxing fight to happen at Yankee Stadium II, this fight was met with large anticipation as Miguel Cotto- a former 3-time World Champion- went up against Yuri Foreman- the reigning belt holder- for the WBA Super Welterweight title belt.

Miguel Cotto was coming off of a 12th round TKO loss from Manny Pacquiao, wherein he lost his WBO Welterweight belt. Yuri Foreman on the other hand had just defeated Daniel Santos for the WBA Super Welterweight belt, becoming the first Israeli be a WBA champion.

Miguel Cotto started out the fight strong, connecting to Foreman with a jab that stunned Foreman at the end of the first round. The second, third, and fourth rounds all went very similarly with Foreman becoming more active in the ring, yet by the end of the fourth his nose was bleeding. In the fifth and sixth rounds, Cotto and Foreman continued to battle well. The seventh round featured a fall by Foreman due to a weak right knee (which was braced) and after falling a few more times between the seventh and eighth rounds his corner threw in the towel halfway through the eighth round to signal an ending to the fight.

However, referee Arthur Mercante Jr. allowed Foreman to continue the fight due to no immediate danger being present and the Israeli boxer wanted to. After a couple minute delay to explain what was happening the eighth round was continued and ended with no further excitement.

42 seconds into the ninth round, Cotto landed a left hook on Foreman that took him down yet again, and at this point the referee called off the fight as a TKO victory for Cotto. All-in-all, it was clear that Foreman (unless through a TKO/KO of his own) was not going to win the fight as at the time of stoppage, Cotto was favored on all 3 judges scorecards: 79-73, 79-73, and 78-74.

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