A bashful little boy let out impish, primal screams of victory upon seeing Yankees third baseman Scott Brosius successfully convert a 5-3 ground out for the final out in the decisive Game Four of the 1998 World Series, all occurring on the night of October 21st, 1998. Though only two years and two days old at the time, he had fallen in love with the greatest organization in sports.
Fittingly, Brosius won World Series MVP that year. Despite having a mostly pedestrian career from a statistical standpoint, Brosius become and has remained my favorite character in pinstripes. Over the years, the aforementioned little boy became infatuated with the Bronx Bombers, also known as the Evil Empire, or, as I simply put, the Yankees.
That little boy is me, and that night of October 21st, 1998 is the night I became fixated on the pinstripes.
In my 21 years of life, I have witnessed my team hoist the Commissioner’s Trophy five times. Often, an innumerable number of people never get to see their favorite teams win, sometimes for generations. The frequency at which I have seen the Yankees win championships is not something I attribute to luck or serendipity; rather, I base it on the fact that the teams are and were comprised of men who rose above the rest.
Folks often suggest that sports are a “distraction”, or an “escape from reality”. Both of those things are true… sometimes. The fact of the matter is that I love this franchise simply because it embodies me.
What do I mean by that? Also quite a rudimentary answer. The Yankees’ players are human, and the amalgamation of personalities and talents produces what we see at least 162 times a year. In their greatest moments (no less than 96, by my count), the Yankees are emblematic of my own triumphs, as well as the cathartic moments of the people I care about.
Consequentially, in the team’s moments of discord and malaise, it represents me during some despondent moments. Game 7 of the 2004 ALCS certainly evokes sentimental, crestfallen instances of my life that I would rather forget.
The emotional attachment I have forged with this ball club is one that cannot be shattered or broken. As facetious as it may sound, it is truly a love story.
I have never even had thoughts of being lecherous or acting as a shameless infidel, especially with this fine team. Many times I have cried, and many more times I have screamed in celebration in such a voracious fashion that neighbors came knocking on the door. The Yankees remind me that, while I am only human, I can become the greatest ever if I want to.