In real life, the New York Yankees have been the ‘white knights’ of professional baseball. Never playing dirty... always about class. Yes, they are sometimes ridiculed and sometimes hated, but generally they are revered and respected. Even in the cinematic world, the Yankees, even though often the favorite, are given that blue collar underdog feel.
Gary Cooper played Lou Gehrig. Gary Cooper! The sheriff from ‘High Noon’ played one of baseball’s most beloved players. But in one fictional world, the Yankees are a little "grey-er." No... I’m not referencing ’Fifty Shades of Grey,’ that would be gross. I mean like their road uniforms. I’m talking about the Yankees of the film Major League.
Major League is one of my favorite baseball films, and in this world, while still on top, Clu Haywood stands at first base in New York! Before Miguel Cabrera of the Detroit Tigers, Haywood was your reigning Triple Crown winner.
“How’s your wife and my kids?” That's Clu Haywood saying that... played by A.L. Cy Young winner Pete Vuckovich. On the mound, you had “The Duke,” Duke Simpson who, according to Harry Doyle may have thrown at his kid during a father/son game. These Yankees were bad ass... and dirty.
But these Yankees were the antithesis of what the real Yankees were in some ways. But who among us didn’t get tired of the hero doing the right thing or the same thing over and over again?
Remember when people got tired of Hulk Hogan telling us to take our vitamins? Then the unthinkable happened. Hogan got tired of us and became “Hollywood” Hogan.
You see what I mean?
Maybe it was Harry Doyle’s announcing that had me so intrigued with Haywood, but haven’t you ever wondered once what the real Yankees would be like as the bad guys?
What if the Yankees had the meanest players and an ‘I don’t give a crap’ attitude? You gotta wonder. What if class and professionalism went out the window?
“I'm hung over, my knees are killin' me and if you're going to pull this s***, at least you could've said you were from the Yankees.” – Jake Taylor
I doubt the boys in pinstripes will ever give up tradition and honor, although it's fun to think about. In the end though, what works best for the Yankees is their class and tradition. Heck, it’s worked 27 times...and it will continue to be part of their amazing franchise...
But what if…?
Wolfgang Von Bunt
BYB Staff Writer
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