I've learned a lot while interacting with other fans. Not just fans of the Yankees, but fans of any professional sports team. People become passionate and emotional over players, plays, moments... it really is a beautiful thing. Think for a minute, where were you when Mariano Rivera broke the all-times saves record? Or when the Yankees played their Grand Slam trifecta game? Or when Pedro Martinez flipped Don Zimmer because he felt threatened? Depending on which team you root for, your reaction to those moments may have been very different. But, more than that, depending on what kind of fan you are, your reaction may have been very different.
With Robinson Cano returning to the Bronx with his new team, the media has created this sort of circus of speculation. Would he be booed or cheered? Craig Calcaterra, who we really like around here at BYB, wrote a piece about booing Cano too. You can read it HERE, but in a nutshell, he was kind of reprimanding Yankees fans for booing Cano, or at least that's what we thought. His point is that it doesn't matter one way or another, so why bother? Calcaterra, I really enjoy reading your stuff, and I think you are awesome, but I respectfully disagree.
I have a great amount of respect for the contributions that Cano made to the team. In 9 seasons in pinstripes he hit .302, hit 204 home runs, and had 822 RBI's. He was part of the 2009 World Championship team. He is a golden glover, and arguably the best second baseman in the game. Look, I am the first to tell you that I am bitter over Cano having left the team. I think his representation handled the negotiations with the Yankees poorly. And I think Seattle was silly to buy into a 10 year contract. Cano is phenomenal at second base, arguably the best in the league. But no one, no not even Cano, is worth a 10 year contract. Sorry, Cano. Really, I adore you as a player, but I'm just speaking my mind on this.
As I said before, every fan is different. Personally, I don't need to boo Cano. I'm bitter, and I wish he had stayed with the Yankees, but I don't wish him ill. I recognize his talent, and appreciate watching him play, even in Seattle. But, there are others who did boo him. Those who are angry over the way he left. And you know what? They can!
As fans, we invest not just time, but money, into our teams. You love your team. You are passionate about it. You boo and cheer whomever you so choose. I get Calcaterra's point. Either way it won't change what has already happened. But if you saw him out there, and you let a "BOO" escape your lips, then so be it! Trying to make someone feel bad about their natural reaction to something seems like bullying. You aren't a bully now, are you Calcaterra? I kid! Calcaterra really is a decent guy, I just happen to disagree with him on this one subject. To some people, booing him will make the difference. It will help them let go of the left over anger, and move on. Maybe it's what they need.
Bottom line, whether you booed Cano last night, or applauded him, or even ignore his existence all together, it really is your choice! Not all fans react the same. Some may even spit obscenities, and make harsh, cruel, if not a bit funny, comments about the whole thing. Don't let others, even a nice guy like Calcaterra, define your fandom.