The Yankees that I Use to Know

I became a Yankees fan in the late 80’s. Back then there was little to celebrate. They had a few star players on their roster during the late 80s and early 90s, but the best finish they had from 1987-1992 was 4th place.

Back then there were only two divisions in each league, with 7 teams each (AL East/West  and NL East/West) so 4th place was a middle of the road performance. In 1990 they hit rock bottom and finished last in the division. To make matters worse, the RedSox won the division that year. The stretch from 1982-1993 was arguably the worst in Yankees history (in the post Babe Ruth era).

I became a fan when there was nothing to celebrate – except their winning legacy. It was fun to cheer on All Stars like Don Mattingly, Willie Randolph, Rickey Henderson, and Dave Righetti, but team performance is far more important than any individual player’s stats – just ask any Cleveland Cavaliers fan.

2013 reminds me of when I first became a Yankees fan. There’s not a lot of hope left this season. With an aging roster and injuries holding the team back, it’s hard to imagine them getting hot and making the playoffs. My expectations are low. I just want to see them give the Red Sox a hard time, not get swept by shitty teams, and see Mo go out on top in Houston at the end of the season.

No doubt the Yankees have a tough road ahead, but they will recover and win another World Series. Seasons like this give me a little perspective – what would it be like if I were a Cubs fan? 105 years without a World Series is a lot harder to deal with than a few bad years.

Onward.

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