It’s no surprise that the most popular MLB franchise is also the most despised. For every person who hates the New York Yankees (aka “The Evil Empire”), there’s a person who claims to be a die-hard Yankees fan. The Yankees sell more merchandise than any other MLB team, and their consistent performance on the field is unmatched. Nonetheless, they have the highest payroll in baseball and they toss large contracts to steal talented players from small-market teams. Personally, I hate the Yankees and here are a couple of reasons why.
For over twenty years, the Yankees have dominated free agency. In the last five years, the Yankees’ major free agent acquisitions include Mark Teixeira, C.C. Sabathia, Alex Rodriguez, Russell Martin, and Hiroki Kuroda. For comparison, over the last five years the Royals big free agent signings include Gil Meche, Jose Guillen, and an ancient Jason Kendall. There’s a common argument among baseball fans that the Yankees don’t develop players themself, they just buy other teams’ superstars. This isn’t exactly true as proven by Yankees regulars Robinson Cano, Brett Gardner, Mariano Rivera, and Derek Jeter. However, the reality is that the Yankees do steal some of the game’s best talent by offering them enormous contracts.
The Yankees have established quite the reputation for signing the game’s best players. For instance, when the Yankees traded away Jesus Montero a couple of months ago, some Yankees fans responded by saying that they’ll just sign him back in a few years anyways. The current Yankees payroll sits around $210 million. That’s about five times as much as the Royals payroll. The Yankees get much of their money from advertising, television revenues and merchandising, which brings me to my next reason for my hatred for the Yankees: the fans.
Yankees fans come in all types. Just like every MLB franchise, the Yankees have die-hard fans who are generally knowledgable about the team. I have no issue with fans that genuinely follow their team throughout the season. However, the Yankees have more bandwagon fans than any other team. Yankees hats, jerseys, and other merchandise can be found in all corners of the world.
The most common item for a Yankees fan to own is the hat. Debatably popularized and re-energized by superstar rapper and Brooklyn native Jay-Z, Yankees hats are owned by all types of people. Some people who own Yankees hats have never watched a Yankees game in their lifetime. They either own the hat because they like the way it looks, they’re from New York, or simply because it’s a popular hat. In the end, owning a Yankee hat is not only supporting the Yankees but all of baseball.
Some people from New York tend act like all of the land east of the Hudson River is just farms and uncivilized areas. This leads to constant complaints from Yankee fans about playing games on the West Coast. It’s understandable that Yankees fans don’t like when their team’s game starts at 10:00P.M. in New York, which is somewhat understandable. But most of the other East Coast teams never complain about it like Yankees fans. Yankees fans need to realize that actually more MLB players come from California than New York. Baseball is just as popular on the West Coast as it is in the East. The World does not revolve around Yankee Stadium (gasp).
When the Yankees are on the road, they are usually the biggest attraction in town. When the Yankees show up to a smaller-market city, all of a sudden the attendance of that game makes it the hottest ticket in town. From Yankees road games I’ve gone to, I’ve noticed how many fans show up in Yankees gear. When you ask one of those fans where they’re from, they tell you something like Montana, for example. Many of these fans show up to games supporting the Yankees just because the Yankees are popular, and they want to be fit in as well.
It’s sort of fun to cheer against the Yankees. People who dislike the Yankees have many reasons, but I think the Yankees’ fans and payroll are the main two reasons. Only under extreme circumstances will I cheer for the Yankees. After all, they already have enough fans on the bandwagon.
***Today’s feature was prepared by our Baseball Writer, Sam Evans. We highly encourage you to leave your comments and feedback at the bottom of the page and share in the discussion with our readers. You can also follow Sam on Twitter***
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