I love New England and the city of Boston. However, having grown up in New York City, I remain forever a New York Yankees fan. Beyond my dedication and fanaticism to the Yankees, I am a diehard fan of the game, the sport of baseball. Sadly, it was in my lifetime when the sport I love so dearly put sportsmanship on the backburner to business enterprise and ticket prices rose, salaries went into the stratosphere, and corporate sponsorship reached new heights by taking over the actual names of the ball parks. Yet, with the exception of a one year boycott after the last player strike, I have been watching the game of baseball since I could remember. In fact, I actually taught the finer points of the game to my dad who emigrated from Italy in 1955 (he was a professional soccer player there) while he insisted I watch soccer on the Spanish stations (what a hoot that was for me, especially since they were speaking in either Spanish or Italian).
Easily the most difficult part of living in this town is being a Yankee fan (granted, it would probably be difficult for a Red Sox fan to live in NY, but for very different reasons). I will admit that the Red Sox have a fan base known for their loyalty, but they really have a huge chip on their shoulder for the fact that their team last won the championship in 1918; the Yankees have won 26 championships in that time. Now before you critics start in with the old moneybags Steinbrenner (referring to principal owner of the NY Yankees, George Steinbrenner) and how he just "buys" championships, the Yankees have won 6 of their 26 World Series under his ownership; so SHUT UP with that already. And before I go any further, I do not hate the Red Sox, at least not in the same way that so many of the Red Sox fans spout absurd comments such as "Yankees Suck". For instance, Johnny Damon, one of my favorite ball players, is a Red Sock (???Could this be the correct wording???) . Here is a guy who clearly eats, sleeps, and breathes the game of baseball. Anyway, before this post just goes completely away from what it's title implies, I'll stop ranting and move along.
Yesterday, Nomar Garciappara was traded to the Chicago Cubs. Nomar, a ten year veteran and lifelong Red Sock (until yesterday), epitomizes what a professional athlete should be - work hard, play hard, be true to your game and true to your fans and your team. Nomar always gave his all and got on that field day after day playing to win at all costs. Unfortunately, Nomar was never appreciated by his team for his efforts and even though he clearly has a great fan base here in bean town, dare I say he didn't always get the respect he deserved from them as well. I hope that Nomar will receive the respect he deserves in Chicago. Furthermore, I hope the fans in this city take a cold, hard look at what they've lost.
Until next time, May God Bless You All!