I may or may not be the same person who fiercely argued that A-Rod swat was actually part of the natural running motion. And I may have also adamantly contended that the Ken Jennings fiasco was a scam ABC pulled to get their ratings up. And lastly, there’s a possibility I wrote a college paper asserting that Lord of the Flies was really about materialism and society’s preoccupation with real estate and property. (Why else would they be always fighting over that damn conch shell?)
So I have admittedly made a few bad calls. And with that kind of track record, some could think it impossible for me to craft a convincing case for not hating the Yankees, especially since I am usually not slowed by logic. But convincing a college English professor of ridiculous literary themes is one thing. I can sure as hell sway the imbeciles who haven’t caught on that it’s perennially maddening to root against a team that wins more than they lose.The Yankees are essentially The Godfather of baseball, while the Red Sox are like syndicated Sex and the City: an entourage of idiots with a shell of greatness and raw skill, but without the classic, timeless substance that positions the Yankees at the core of baseball’s spirit. I love the Yankees not just because I’m from New York, but because to me, they embody The Game. That said, realize that during the 2004 World Series, I didn’t root for the Cardinals, nor did I root against the Red Sox, despite having the latter team render me immobile and jaded for 3 weeks.
Put simply, if you love sports, you don’t support another team’s downfall.
Yes, if you love the Red Sox, you hope the Yankees contract polio and scabies, and in the words of the late Pedro, “f—ing disappear.” This, right here, is why Yankee-haters can never claim to truly love sports. Because if they did, they’d celebrate talent and heart and baseball at its finest, whether that game is played by Boston, the Yankees, or any other team.
Consider the following:
Exhibit A: The Godfather Theory- Michael has Fredo killed. Because there is only one thing more important to him than his family, and that is the bigger Family. There’s only one thing I love more than the Yankees, and that’s baseball. So a decision to hate the Yankees is effectively a betrayal of the bigger Game. Good luck ever making it in the Mafia. Fellow Fan, you’re my older brother and I love you, but don’t ever take sides with anyone against the family again…ever.
Exhibit B: The 90210 Theory- This is for Mets fans who automatically loathe their nemesis just because they (the fans) were born in Long Island. Suppose Brenda represents the Mets, Kelly the Yankees, Dylan the World Series, and Bev 9er (the cultural phenomenon series!) symbolizes baseball as a whole. I personally always liked the Brenda-Dylan dynamic; there was something about Kelly that was too perfect. And it rubbed me the wrong way how she used her hotness and money to always get her way. So you can imagine my disappointment and moral quandary when Brenda left the show! But in reality, the decision was a simple one. There was about as much chance of me cutting 90210 out of my life as there was of Gabrielle Carteris making a staggering comeback. This is how it is: I hated Kelly, but once Brenda was out of the picture, I had no choice but to root for the more attractive option that I knew in my heart of hearts was going to end up with Dylan in the long run anyway. Bev 9er is to some chicks as baseball is to real people, but think about how chicks view baseball and real people view 90210: sheer entertainment that should never be examined through the discerning lens of principles. In other words, whether you’re a Mets or Yankees fan, you’re both biting out of the same Apple. One of the things I loved about my ex-boyfriend was that he was a born and bred Mets fan who complained about the Yankees until he was watching them play in the playoffs: “I’m not going root for a team I don’t even like if I can root for a New York team.”
Exhibit C: The Airtight Logic of the Immortal Seinfeld- Falling back on the age-old adage, Seinfeld argues we are merely “rooting for laundry.” Which begs the question, what is it that you really hate about the Yankees? Certainly not the players. Barring that dirtbag who wakes up before the sun comes up, you’d be hard-pressed to identify a Yankee who’s unequivocally worse than any garden-variety pain-in-the-ass on any other club. With Seinfeld’s pearl of wisdom in mind, how would Yankee-haters feel if your favorite player went to the dark side? What if players like Jim Thome or Sean Casey wore pinstripes? What kind of psychic crippling occurred when Tony Clark subway-ed it over to the Bronx? Or what if Bernie or Hideki or Mariano were traded to your team? Seriously, who exactly do Yankee-haters hate?
From what I can see, there are 3 main reasons for this asinine hatred, all of which can be dissolved faster and more seamlessly than Chicago fans’ pipe dreams come September:
1.) Steinbrenner: Ok, I’ll give you that he’s out of hand, gluttonous, childish, wildly obtuse, and his power has been abused so much it’s beginning to look like it should’ve been cast as an extra for Saving Private Ryan. So let’s hate the whole franchise! Let’s never support a talented, successful team! Band together and boycott The Apprentice! Oh…wait…we weren’t talking about Trump? Let he who is not addicted to this vanity show cast the first stone.
2.) “They buy their team.” I apologize to the fans of teams whose players have been donated; you can skip over this. So if a talented team is a function of payroll, explain the 2003 World Series champion with the 6th lowest payroll. Or the Mets who lounge in the High Rollers suite and didn’t even finish above .500 last year. Such a weak case. I look at people who still run around barking this nonsense the same way I look at people who wear Uggs. Not only can I not believe these things were ever accepted in the first place, I’m just in shock that there are still people who continue to endorse them as if their merit holds an ounce of verity. The Evil Emperor’s New Clothes theory, I guess.
3.) THE FANS: My personal favorite flawed excuse. Yankees fans are arrogant and obnoxious because we’re spoiled. See, I’m not sure exactly how other fans want us to react to our hometown dynasty. “Aw, shucks. I guess they won again, but who’s keeping score? The important thing is to have fun.” It’s hard to be humble when your team is the undisputed most successful franchise in sports history. We’re not talking about winning a Miss Universe pageant here. Demure modesty has no place in sports. Just ask Red Sox fans right now. And all the Boston talk about how they “always believed”? Sox fans are like wingmen: they complain and whine about their status, but in reality, they have the ideal scenario. No pressure to win because everyone expects you to play second fiddle. So when the wingman actually does score, it’s mind-blowing. Watch the faithful fan at Game 4 (before Ortiz’s big hit) with the banner, “I can’t believe we fell for it again.” Well, if that’s not unparalleled conviction, then I don’t know what is. At least Yankee fans trust in their boys.
You hate the New York Yankees for the same reason chicks get enraged with their boyfriends during fights. As you continue to become more rattled and frustrated, the Bombers remain confident and unwavering, even after losing. While every other fan either anticipates disappointment or prays for a win, Yankee fans have 26 reasons to expect superiority. You hate the Yankees because you envy our ability to subscribe to such great expectations.
Here’s an idea: why don’t you just hate your own team who loses? They’re the ones that disappointed you.
It’s amazing how many fans are more emotionally involved in hating the Yankees than they are in supporting their own team. Misery loves company, as they say. If I haven’t convinced you to check your blind wrath at the door and embrace the sport instead, maybe George Bernard Shaw’s words will:
“Hatred is the coward’s revenge for being intimidated.”
Don’t hate the playa. Love the game.