On my friend Joe’s blog [Mets or Yankees...do you even care?], he allows his neighbor Bryan (a Mets fan) explain the subtle difference between the Mets and Yankees organizations in a not so subtle way. Below is the comment I left on his blog, reprinted below with permission from… well, me. Text below in italics has been added since leaving the comment.
I’m a 30 year old Yankees Fan. I grew up in Northern New Jersey and now live NW of the city in Orange County, New York. As far as Bryan’s musings on each team’s demographics, that much is true. However…
I became a Yankees fan when my grandfather took me to my first game in the Bronx. I was seven years old. He bought me a Yankee hat in the stadium that day and I still treasure that hat – though have since retired it with a new Yankee hat. My grandfather is now 91 years old and never misses a televised baseball game. He also has never been anywhere close to being white-collar or business class. I also know a high-level executive at a Fortune 500 company who has season tickets to the Mets. So this debunks the Mets Fans = Working Class and Yankees Fans = Upper Class theory.
My grandfather will not choose allegiance to the Yankees or Mets (unlike me). He claims they are both hometown teams and he roots for the hometown. Mind you, this is from a man who lived in New York when there were FOUR hometown teams. The Dodgers and Giants have since migrated to the left coast. This attitude led me to the realization that baseball is so much more about the history and prestige of the game, not of any one team. The Yankees, for me, embody this history and prestige. To my memory, have always played the game with respect… for the game. What more can you want out of a team?
As for salaries? The reason that the Yankees organization spends so much money on their team is because the Yankees owner, Mr. George Steinbrenner, is actually a baseball fan and not just a business man – unlike SO MANY other team owners who could care less about the game and it’s lush history and just want a moneymaker. Hate him or love him, Steinbrenner is a baseball fan who loves the game and his team so much that he pours as much money as he can to make the best team that he can. What self-respecting fan of the game can blame him?
Did I cheer the Mets in ’86 when they won the World Series? Sure… but they beat the Red Sox at the same time (Thanks Bill Buckner!).
Evil Empire. The name always makes me chuckle. I would agree with Joe and chalk this up to Envy.
To sum it up (and my apologies for making this so long), any true fan of baseball should be a Yankees fan… even if they root for another team.
Let’s also not forget, I blogged in February 2005 about my tour of Fenway Park [A Yankee Fan's Tour of Fenway Park]