Monday, January 1, 2018


I'm ready for this New Year.  I'm ready for 2018.

Many of you don't know it, but in 2017, I dealt with many things that were unpredictable and beyond my control in my life.  It was a scary year for me.  But as the year went on, I recognized that there were a few important things in my life that I could always cling to... and those things would always welcome me no matter what. In essence... those 'things' were my safe place.  The places I could go when things around me got tough and way too chaotic.

For one, my family.  I mean my actual family.

My family is growing up... and as I look at my sons mature, I could not be more proud.  They are smart. They are active... hardworking and determined to be great people.  My wife and I are proud of that.  We push them to make smart choices, to communicate with us if there is ever a problem in their own lives, and we are always there for them, putting their lives before ours to make sure they get what they want out of life. 

You want your children to be successful. You want and hope that your own kids secure better and more prosperous careers than you do and have success and love throughout their own lives. And you hope that they remember how they got there, and always come home when they need to, no matter how old they are... no matter how successful they have become.  My family is my safe place.

And then there's my BYB family...

You know... it's funny.  I received a text from Mike O'Hara yesterday.  That text simply read, "I've been with BYB now for 7 years. Could that be right?" I thought about it.  I created Bleeding Yankee Blue in September 2010.  He started with me the summer of 2011.  Hard to believe... but it's true. These days, Mike and I are very good friends.  I confide in him, we talk a lot of about life. It's good. Not only that... I'm besties with Suzie Pinstripe. She and I talk a lot about the BYB product, ways to move forward, family, pushing each other. It's great.

I communicate regularly with Jeana Bellezza. A lot actually. She's a smart chick, she's got her head on straight, has an amazing future husband, a terrific family and a lot of guts and strength and determination in that heart of hers. 

I like her very much and often think back to the day she and I decided that she was going to write for BYB.  She'd never been published before and wanted a chance.  She got her chance and she's got a following.

Mike Carnesi and I are friends because I am trying to guide him to become a better writer. He's improving every day, and I love that he doesn't give up on himself.  No other blog would do that.  BYB does.

And then there's Ike, Erica, Dan, Barry, Doug, Steve and Chris. And even though they are not regular writers for BYB any longer... we're friends, good friends, and I appreciate them very much.

And it stretches beyond our writers.  The BYB audience is incredible... loyal.  I speak to many of you offline because over the years, we have become good friends because you understand that I am a regular person with simple opinions and thoughts about our Yankees.  Many of you have the same thoughts that I do. Others disagree, but the dialog between us is never hostile.  Because in the end, it's just baseball... and there's no room for hate and disrespect.  More on that in a moment... but the reality is, we learned to bond through our love for the Yankees. It's terrific stuff.

(Andrew Savulich/New York Daily News)
The Yankees in 2017 was a big, big year.  We saw something happen that no one expected.  We were supposed to be in a rebuilding year.  We had just let go of Alex Rodriguez and Mark Teixeira. Joe Girardi is gone. Aaron Boone is back.... and a few years before all that, the Core Four slowly retired from the game. 

Derek Jeter is now an owner for the Miami Marlins.  Mariano Rivera is building churches. 

Jorge Posada and his wife Laura are doing good deeds for the people of Puerto Rico and still looking fabulous in whatever they do.

Photo: Getty Images
We officially met Gary Sanchez, Aaron Judge this year. Saw the kids make an impact over the past few years.  But nothing prepared us quite like 2017.  Because 2017 we saw hope.  As Yankee fans we saw hope for our Yankee future.  We are young again. The fan base spoke, and Cashman and the Yankee brass did the best they could to get the kids to play and move on from the old timers.  There was energy again.

The New York Yankees were 1 game away from going to the World Series this year. We lost to the team that would ultimately win it all.  But we were never supposed to be there.  We weren't supposed to make the playoffs. My God.  If that doesn't make you smile, how about this?

Credit Kim Klement/USA Today Sports, via Reuters
We got Giancarlo Stanton.  We re-signed CC Sabathia, a big lug with a huge heart and a reinvented delivery bound to make an impact in 2018.  And we have a lineup full of youth and a desire to win the whole damn thing because we were close enough last year.

The New York Yankees are exciting again.  But with that excitement comes overexcited fans.  Fans that think they know everything.  Fans that believe that being nasty, disrespectful behind their computer screens is OK. Well... it's not.

We as human beings are taught all our lives by our parents to respect your elders, respect each other, not to be fresh, don't be obnoxious and to treat people how you would like to be treated.  But somewhere along the way, some snarky adults have forgotten all of that.

I'm tired of it.  I think hate and disrespect is a terrible thing.  I believe that people sometimes are too sensitive, yes, but I also believe that if you are trying to have an intelligent dialog, or have an opinion on something... it's very important to try and respectfully get to the bottom of each person's thoughts. Everyone has a voice, but that voice needs to be intelligent.  Calling people 'stupid', 'assholes'.... even 'retarded' is so unacceptable in my eyes, you really need to evaluate who your friends are and who you're speaking to.

I hate, hate and name calling.  I hate disrespect.  And so in 2018, while you and I root for our New York Yankees together, Bleeding Yankee Blue will also do something quite significant.  We're going to call out the haters.  We're going to make examples of those foolish disrespectful people. We're going to feature them on our pages, with their names and avatars and show everyone just how disrespectful they are.  It is a truly uncomfortable and sad day in our lives that people who stand behind their screens need to be so hateful and angry toward others just because they have a different opinion of a story... or of a person.  Negative words should no longer be a thing.  Calling people 'gay', and 'douchebags' and 'dumb' just because they don't have the same opinion as you is wrong. It has to stop.

We are all in this together, folks. Baseball is a beautiful thing. And that brings me back to the great fans of Bleeding Yankee Blue.

The Yankees are how you and I came together. That is how Bleeding Yankee Blue was started. Good people. Smart dialog.  Great conversation. Friendships. Love. Respect.

As we head into 2018, I look forward to more intelligent dialog. More rooting hard for our New York Yankees... and celebrating life with my family in real life... as well as you guys here at BYB.

Let's turn the page.  Let's look forward.  This is a new beginning and it starts right here in 2018...right now.  I cannot wait for the 2018 New York Yankees.  I cannot wait to spread joy and respect with all of you again.

Finally... let me say this... I appreciate you all.  My writers are incredible. My readers are wonderful. I appreciate the banter, the love and support and all the good that comes with it. 

I never in my wildest dreams thought I would ever have such a terrific group of people my life, but I can honestly say you are that.

Thanks for allowing a dream like this to flourish.  That's for being there, supporting this product... and thank you all for being my friend. 

It makes me extremely happy, and it is something I will never forget as long as I live.

Happy New Year. Bring on 2018!

--Robert Casey
Founder & Chief of Bleeding Yankee Blue
Twitter: @BleednYankeeBlu

You wanna write for BYB? Send me a note on Twitter!

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