The Yankees just gave me another reason to hate them today. They placed a sign near a customer service booth on the main concourse of their spring training stadium that stated the following:
Thank you for expressing your concerns. We are sorry that certain players will not be present for portions of spring training. These players have elected to participate in the World Baseball Classic. The World Baseball Classic is an event sanctioned by the commissioner of Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association. The New York Yankees did not vote to support this event. Any comments you have regarding the World Baseball Classic should be directed to the commissioner of Major League Baseball or the Major League Baseball Players Association.
Come on, stop your moaning and complaining! Steinbrenner made it clear that he was not a fan of the WBC when he was the only owner that did not vote to implement it in August 2004 (Steinbrenner abstained from voting), mainly because “if a player gets hurt, he’s risking a lot.”
NEWSFLASH: Players get hurt in spring training too! In fact, the odds of them getting hurt in camp are probably the same as playing in the WBC. George Steinbrenner is just being a selfish idiot once again because he wants complete control over his players and, more importantly, he wants all his stars in spring training so that he gets as many fans to flock to the ballpark and spend money. If George were thinking of anything else but the Yankees, he could tell that the World Baseball Classic not only doesn’t put any player at a ridiculous health risk, but that it is also good for the game, especially at the global level. I’ve watched a few of the Pool A games, which are being held in Tokyo. When Japan was playing, there were extremely good crowds. Furthermore, rumor has it that all the games in Puerto Rico may already be sold out. All indications are that the WBC is promoting interest in baseball abroad.
I’ve never been able to pinpoint exactly what I despise about the Yankees until now. For me, it’s not that they have so much more money to play with than any other team or that they have such high expectations year in and year out, it’s that George Steinbrenner is so ridiculously self-centered. Steinbrenner has to know that the World Baseball Classic is a good thing for the game of baseball, but he doesn’t support it because it takes four of his team’s players away from spring training for a couple weeks. He’s such a money-sucking, controlling, competitive freak of nature that it makes me sick. Maybe I’ll like the Yankees once they aren’t owned by Steinbrenner, but for now I hate them as much as ever.