I’ve mentioned I’m a Yankee fan here before, and I’m not really sure if this post will even really scratch the surface of my fandom. It’s unexplainable, really, but I’ll do my best. If you can be more diehard than diehard, I’m that. It’s funny how it all happened too. My parents recently told me that they were Mets fans back in the mid to late 80s and I could have been raised one (thank goodness I wasn’t, they’re terrible these days! Sorry Mets fans….) I grew up seeing the Yankee scores and headlines in the paper, and found myself hoping they would win, even though I never followed them. I really only knew who Derek Jeter was, and my mom called Joe Torre “Stoneface” for obvious reasons. We were given tickets to a game once, but I have no recollection of it except I think we sat in the grandstand. We were very, very high up. To this day, I wonder if that game has any historical significance…and I’m happy now to say that I was in the old stadium, even if I can’t remember it.
I went to a really big high school that was really into school spirit and all that jazz. I really enjoyed that atmosphere, especially after I decided to go to a smaller college that did not have really any spirit at all. But I never went to any major sporting events that would make me a superfan of any sorts. My junior year, in 2009, I lived with a girl from New York state, who grew up going to the occasional Yankee game and who’s father is a serious fan. She followed them enough to know they were doing well in September and made it to postseason. I would come back to our room at night and find her watching the games, and I became interested. When the World Series was set, she got a call from her dad and he asked if we wanted to go to game one. Done. Set in stone. Went to the mall that night to pick up my hat and Jeter t-shirt. It was then that I knew I was hooked. The energy and passion from the fans in the stadium during that first game was incredible. I didn’t want the series to end because I wanted to keep watching the game of baseball and understand it. When the Yankees won their 27th championship, we were screaming and running around our quad for a good ten minutes. All I wanted to do was go to the tickertape parade. I’m still mad I didn’t. I’d been a fan for such a short time and I was so proud. I couldn’t wait for the 2010 season.
Well whaddya know, Opening Day rolls around and who has tickets? This guy. My roommate’s dad had seats and we got to watch the Yankees get their World Series rings. It was awesome. I managed to get myself to a game or two per year, and increasingly found myself seeking more information on the team and understanding baseball. I’ll watch any Yankee game I can. Twitter is awesome for following the media who follow the team, and it especially helps me to spit out random trivia and whatnot. I can’t explain it…I’m just passionate about it. I want them to win and it pains me when they don’t, now that I understand it all. That new stadium is a beautiful place, and a piece of me dies inside when I see empty seats, because I will take any seat, any game, anything, just to be there. I’m not just some fangirl who likes baseball; I genuinely understand, enjoy, and appreciate the game, so much so that it’s led to me trying to pursue a career in the sports world doing sports marketing. That hasn’t worked out for me yet, but I hope that as long as I keep following something I’m passionate about, something will come my way.
I already feel like this season is flying by. I’m super sad about it because Mariano Rivera, one of the greatest baseball players of all time, not to mention an incredibly humble human being, is retiring at the end of the year. I wish he could play forever because he is practically perfect at what he does. I want the Yankees to win every game every year, and I hope that they win the World Series this year more than ever, for him. I’m also heartbroken that Derek Jeter is still hurt and not playing up here any time soon (miss you love you DJ!) I get emotional just thinking about it. But that’s what happens when you’re a diehard. It’s an unexplainable passion you have, and I’m just glad mine is for the greatest team in the world. Say what you want about the New York Yankees, but now and forever, through their ups and downs, they will be my team.