Wednesday, October 1, 2014


2 years in a row, the Yankees have not made the playoffs.  2 years in a row iconic Yankees have retired. Yankees that had helped bring the club to the World Series 5 times.  It’s a damn shame, but that’s life and as Yankee fans, as spoiled as we may be, we are tougher fans because of it.  Don’t bow your head in shame. Stand tall.  Don’t start talking smack to your Dodgers fan friends and Orioles buddies.  The lesson is simple; their team won, ours did not.  If you’re a true baseball fan, you tip your cap to the better team and then we think about what’s next for ours.  It brings me back to the Bronx last Thursday night.

Derek Jeter stood there after his walk off and said to Meredith Marakovits, and I'm paraphrasing... "Congrats to the Orioles this year." Then there was alittle booing.  Then Jeter said, "They deserve it." They do.

We can discuss what went wrong in Yankeeland all we want.  The debate on firing everyone or no one and why our Yankee offense sucked isn’t going to solve a damn thing right now.  But now the seasons over, and now our team will regroup.  Here's the reality; Looking at our lineup on paper, we were ready to take on the world.  But that didn’t happen.

At the end of this season, did you think for a moment that guys like Chris Capuano and Brandon McCarthy would keep us going? I sure as hell did not.  I was wrong and I feel bad about that. When players believe, great things happen.  I’m thankful to those guys. Some things worked this season and some things didn’t.  But the worst thing we can do as fans is blast the competition because they beat us.  There wasn’t cheating or name calling… they just beat us. Get over it. We’re Yankee fans, we’re not children. We need to act like we expect our team to act.  Remember class and pride and tradition? Well, that means us too ladies and gentlemen.

A few weeks ago I stopped being mad.  It’s not my nature. My nature is to fight, stay angry and keep plugging away, and we’ve never stopped here at Bleeding Yankee Blue.
But here’s the truth;  Despite the rest of America and New York writers like Jayson Stark claiming the Jeter Farewell Tour was too much, it happened anyway.

The best part of us being Yankee fans is, we get it.  The reporters, the commentators will never truly understand fandom like we do because we’ve seen Derek walk tall since day one and fell in love with his professionalism and character.  The reporters, the non-Yankee fans don’t see what we see.  That’s OK. We get it… they don’t.  The sports reporters need to report first.  That’s their job.  If they need to press buttons to sell papers and tell us all that Derek Jeter’s a hypocrite and Jeter is not the greatest ever… they know they’re gonna get to all of us.  But you need to ignore it, we really do. Why? Because the reality is… they have a job to do… we are the fans.  Hey, in some regards that’s why Bleeding Yankee Blue is here.  We ARE fans, and we give you the fans perspective and that’s why you read us.  The sports guys aren’t gonna do that.  Here’s the thing though. Once you understand their craft, ignore it.  Read them, comment, but know it’s a game… it’s a job for them. We are the fans… ultimately, we control it.

The Derek Jeter Farewell tour was amazing down the stretch, but there is no question, it could have been better if the Yankees made the playoffs and perhaps won the World Series.  But we didn’t. But look... no one died.  The reality is, as a team, we didn’t have what it took to make it.

It’s disappointing… it sucks. Again though… you power through and as a fan, you rise above it. I’m not 18 and in college anymore and I’m not gonna punch a hole in my Yankee poster on the door because they lost… Those days are over.  I’m still the same fan. I just lived alittle more all these years later.  We lost, and now we need to fix it. I guess that's my fatherly instinct... sue me.

Put it in perspective. Are you gonna tell your kid to run over to the opposing team’s pitcher and kick him in the shins after a bad loss? No. You line them up and they say, “Good game”, even if you don’t mean it. The reality is, “The best man wins” and we weren’t the best man. Hell, we may not even been second or third best… but we tried with what we had.. and we failed.

I’m gonna leave you with this; Failure makes you stronger.  I belief that losing and allowing that sting to happen once, maybe twice, makes an individual see the eye of the tiger.  No one wants that sting to happen again.  You get a fire in your belly.  You see the big picture.  You believe that you can overcome failure.  That’s a life lesson. That’s what makes an individual come back with more ferocity the next time.  That’s why I always fell in love with guys in sports history that never gave up…

Olympic Gold medalist Dan Jansen. Michael Jordan. Rudy Ruettiger. Yankee pitcher Jim AbbottJorge Posada.  Yankee Prospect Ty Hensley.  And yes… Derek Jeter.  Believe, fight, win.

2014 wasn’t our year, but losers don’t pack up and go home. Losers dig deep to find that flame again.  The Yankees will be back ladies and gentlemen as a team and even though Derek Jeter won’t be there, it doesn’t mean we fold.  The tradition is there.  The character and leadership is there. We will be back and come Opening day, when the New York Yankees take the field… guess who else will be there… all of us.

We’re the New York Yankees…. We’re family. We’re winners and will will rise again. I know that… and I know you know that too.

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