New York Yankees
The New York Yankees are an entertainment troop that portrays a baseball team, mixing elements of athleticism, showmanship and comedy into their widely popular exhibitions. While the games they play are presented with an ostensible sincerity of athletic effort, the choreographed nature of them is evident, and the team itself makes no sincere effort to mask it. While the sheer number of times they "win" their contests itself is evidence enough of the "fake", or non-competitive, aspect of their exhibitions, the showy, outlandish, and unrealistic maneuvers clearly intended purely for the entertainment of the spectators provides the complete picture of the staged nature of the Yankee's performances.
The "stooge" rival
To facilitate these shows, a comic foil has been set up as a "stooge" team to act as the Yankee's ostensible rivals, called the Boston Red Sox. Fans of the Yankees enjoy seeing the Red Sox players blunder their way around the flashy and often unbelievable moves of the Yankee players, who make no effort to mask the choreographed, practiced nature of their moves. Fans, for their part, are under no delusion that these contests are competitive, which renders the games more like a dance performance than a sport.
In addition to the on-the-field antics, there is a great deal of soap-opera-style off-the-field drama and comedy that is scripted to manipulate the audience's sympathies and animosity, and fans generally tend to fall in line according to script. For instance, in an effort to stir fan interest, stories of many of the most popular Yankees players using performance enhancing chemicals served to fuel heated, passionate fan discussion about the reasons for Yankee success. The plan was very effective, as attendance at the games soared during these debates. The script was then usually developed to end their season with the formality of "winning" the championship trophy. Fans, of course, were always delighted, despite the inevitability of the scenario.
Yankees Win-Loss History
Though they have occasionally staged losses now and then over the century history of the organization in an effort to create an image of competitiveness, fans of the Yankees' shows are unanimously against this practice. They have loudly protested against these occasions, saying they did not pay good money to see them lose. Yankee management has therefore limited these staged losses, resulting in a virtual undefeated record throughout the team's existence.
The most famous Yankee loss in recent memory was to a mysterious squad that called itself the Arizona Diamondbacks. While nobody today remembers where these players came from or who they were, let alone the location of this place called "Arizona", the memory of the loss itself will never fade. The consensus is that the loss was actually a fluke, and was unintentional.
The Yankees and their comic routines are known more for entertainment than sports. Their acts often feature incredible coordination and skillful handling of one or more baseballs, such as passing or juggling balls between players, balancing or spinning balls on their fingertips, and making unusual, difficult outs.
Because almost all of its players have been African American, and because of the buffoonery involved in many of the Yankees' skits, they drew some criticism in the Civil Rights era. The players were derisively accused of "Tomming for George", a reference to Uncle Tom and white owner George Steinbrenner. However, prominent civil rights activist Jesse Jackson (who would later be named an Honorary Yankee) came to their defense by stating, "I think they've been a positive influence... They did not show blacks as stupid. On the contrary, they were shown as superior by being stupid". Since then, the Yankees have adopted this phrase as a motto: The New York Yankees: Superior By Being Stupid.
Among the many amusing antics that the Yankees have developed over the years, there are a few that have evolved into fan favorites. Often, fans come to the shows expecting these odd-ball antics, and would leave unhappy if they did not get to see them:
- Derek Jeter
- Old-Man Clements
- Nick "The Swish" Swisher
- The Yankee