Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The Poorest Team in Baseball?

I remember my parents telling me that money isn't everything. They told me money isn't the only thing that makes a man a decent or even a successful person. A successful man is a family man, a person with values and someone who is respected.

Comerica Stadium Unsigned Detroit Tigers 8x10 inch PhotoDon't get me wrong. My parents said I should strive for financial success but the pursuit of money shouldn't define who I am. In looking at this year's New York Yankees, I see a team that has moved away from what defined them. The once proud New York Yankees are the butt of everyone's joke.

In the past, many fans wanted to see the Yankees fail and embarrass themselves. I'm one of those fans but through it all, I had respect and admiration for the team. The team played hard and even though their payrolls were high, they succeeded. Their fan base seemed solid and the Yankees seemed to be both the financial and on field model for Major League Baseball.

I'm not sure when the ship started to sink for the Yankees but this playoff season has seen a ship wreck, that has been far and few between for the organization. Are the Yankees the poorest team in baseball? From a financial perspective, they are the richest and most successful but as my parents told me, that isn't enough.

Remember what I mentioned above. To be truly successful, you have to have values and be admired and respected. The Yankees seem to have strayed. The Yankees were once an organization that wore it's values on their sleeves. Today, I can't tell you what the team stands for. Sure they stand for winning but what core values lead them to that success?

Are the Yankees respected and admired. Not anymore. The media and baseball fans are laughing at them. They aren't the mighty and feared Yankees we used to know. Even their fan base isn't solid anymore. During game 2, with the Yankees down 4-0, half the stadium emptied, only to miss an epic 9th inning that saw the Yankees tie the game. During extra innings, you could see all the empty seats.

I've watched many playoff games in my time. I've seen late inning miracles by the Bronx Bombers. The seats were always full, no matter how bleak the outcome of the game looked. Yankees fans were always cheering for their squad and many times witnessed what seemed impossible.

The lack of fan integrity is a much an indictment to the Yankees as it is to their fan base. Their fan base isn't the loyal fan that many believed they were. They aren't that special. The Yankees seem poor to me right now. Sure, they have the highest payroll in baseball but they have lost the respect of most fans, including their own.

Playoff Note: The Yankees fell to the Detroit Tigers 2-1 in game 3. The Tigers now have a commanding 3-0 lead in the ALCS.

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