Boy, oh boy…this is going to be an unpopular post with my fellow Braves and Red Sox fans. Probably fans of every other team in baseball too. Nonetheless, I’m writing it anyway. It’s so nice having my own blog with no editorial control some days!
Today’s question: who are the biggest fans of baseball? Not of a team, of the game of baseball? Although it pains me, as a Braves and Red Sox fan, to say this…I think it’s Yankees fans.
I am constantly surprised at the number of people who comment on this blog and my other blogs, email me and follow me on Twitter who are Yankees fans. They by far outnumber the fans of any other team, including the Braves. Initially, I found this surprising since I got my start on a Braves blog and continue to write about them from time to time here. If you follow me on Twitter (and really, why wouldn’t you? haha), then you know I also tweet about the Braves quite a bit. Yet my biggest contingent of followers are Yankees fans.
So, I started thinking about it today, and I realized that a lot of the comments and emails I get are from Yankees fans. I also read a number of blogs about the inner-workings of baseball that are written by Yankees fans. (Since it’s Friday and I have officially started my vacation, I’ll have a little fun and give a shout out to my favorite, It’s All About the Money.)
I have no idea why, but it seems that Yankees fans are students of the game more so than fans of any other team. What I mean by that is that they study and write about things like whether baseball needs a salary cap, how and when instant replay should be used, how revenue sharing is used by recipient clubs, etc.
At first, I thought it was because so much of what I believe in coincides with the way the Yankees are run as a team. Except, the most amazing thing about these Yankees fans is that they usually argue against the free market mechanisms I favor!
Now, maybe I’m wrong. Maybe it just seems like the majority of fans interested in these types of non-team-specific baseball topics are Yankees fans. Maybe it’s because Yankees fans are so vocal about telling you they’re Yankees fans.
Are they the biggest fans of watching the game or the most vocal supporters of their team? I don’t know, there are extraordinarly passionate fans of the hometown team in several cities: Boston and St. Louis, off the top of my head. But somehow I always find myself talking to a Yankees fan when it comes to business and legal issues in baseball.
Time for a few examples. Back in Boston in the spring, I debated revenue sharing with a Yankees fan sitting behind me at Fenway. Last year when the Yankees were in Atlanta, I debated salary caps with a Yankees fan next to me in the standes. When I was in New York a couple of years ago to see a game in the old Yankee Stadium, I got into a conversation about stadium financing with a Yankees fan. The fact of the matter is, I go to a lot of baseball games, all over the country, and these conversations almost always seem to happen with Yankees fans. Again, maybe it’s simply that there are so many Yankees fans.
All I know is that I’m continually amazed by the Yankees fans who interact with me on a daily basis. I’m also appreciative…even if your team has made the lives of my two teams miserable in the past, and I literally can’t stand the sight of A-Rod. Other than that, you’re great!