I've already pissed off everyone except G$ with the title of this post. But I was talking this over with Clarkster's brother the other day and I explained rationally why it is ridiculous for people to have the amount of hate that they do for the Bronx Bombers. Being a Cubs fan, I could care less if the Yankees or Phillies win the World Series. However, I am glad that the match up brings a Fall Classic with some serious drama.
So back to the point at hand. Why hate the Yankees? Well, the obvious answer is because they "buy championships." This goes all the way back to when the Yankees purchased Babe Ruth from the Red Sox. Even back then the Yankees wanted to win at all costs.
But can the Yankees buy championships? Yes and no. They obviously have an advantage over teams from smaller markets, but that doesn't prohibit the Diamondbacks or Marlins from defeating the Yankees head to head in the World Series in 2001 and 2003, respectively. In fact, while the Yankees have been spending the most money of any team in history during this decade, they haven't won a World Series since beating the Mets in 2000. They did make the playoffs every year except one, but let's be clear: money does NOT equal guaranteed championships.
Many San Francisco Giants' fans hate the Yankees with the passion of the 1989 Earthquake. But if you ask a Giants fan about who they would like the Giants to sign in the offseason, you might get a Yankees-esque answer. Matt Holliday? Jason Bay? Trade for Adrian Gonzalez? And what would happen if the Giants ownership ponied up the cash to sign these players? Well, they'd have a payroll closer to the Yankees. They would have purchased players like the Yankees. Is there a little bit of jealousy of the Yankees from other fan bases? Absolutely.
And let's not forget my beloved Cubs. With about $135 million in payroll, how did the Cubs do this year? Well, they underachieved and were barely over .500. Their highest paid player, Alfonso Soriano (who looked like a great signing for the first two years), was a HUGE bust this year. Once again, sometimes money doesn't always equal great performance.
There's also SF Giant Barry Zito. Zito rebounded a bit this year, but we can all agree he's overpaid. Hell, there's also Carl Pavano who the Yankees purchased for 4 years/$40 million and was one of the biggest bust signings of all time. My point is that the Yankees were at their best with players named Paul O'Neill, Scott Brosius, Tino Martinez, and Bernie Williams and have not done quite as well with big ticket players like Jason Giambi and Alex Rodriguez (well, A-Rod's doing great this postseason, but up until now he hasn't done much.)
Besides the money, I absolutely hate when fans will cheer FOR their team's rivals when the rival faces the Yankees. A's fans are horribly guilty of this practice. I understand A's fans think there is a magical rivalry with the Yankees from the early 2000's, but let's be honest, the Angels are the A's main rivals right now. You should hate them above all else.
There is ZERO chance I will ever cheer for the Cardinals or White Sox over the Yankees. If either series ever presents itself, I will literally turn into a Yankee fan for a series. Watch me sing "God Bless America" and "New York, New York." In fact, if you ever see a Blue Jays/Cardinals World Series- consider me on the Toronto bandwagon. Insert any team against the Cardinals and I will cheer against St. Louis. That is what being a fan is all about.
So if you want to hate the Yankees, have at it. I really don't care. But let's be realistic about why you hate them. Come up with a better reason than "because they buy their players." Hate them because you can't stand Jorge Posada's ears. Hate them because Johnny Damon was once a Red Sox and now is a Yankee. Hate them because Mariano Rivera just seems too polite and it's hard to believe he can be such a nice guy, hard worker, and fierce competitor all at the same time. Hate them because George Costanza used to work for them on a fictional TV show. All of these reasons are better than the unoriginal and weak reasons that I hear over and over and over.
So comment away and feel free to disagree. I'm not really cheering for either team in the World Series, but I do hope the games are exciting and well played. But I refuse to have an irrational hate for a team that plays by the rules that baseball has set up which enrages other jealous fan bases.
By the way, what happens to all the luxury tax that the Yankees pay every year that gets split up among the other teams? Oh, that's right- most owners pocket the money rather spend it on new, better players. Now that is something you should hate.