According to the Rolling Stone rabblerouser (back in April):
“…the first six-game losing streak in May, the first whispers of a Joe Girardi firing in June — [the high-priced Yankee free agents] will all scatter like rats to the far corners of the Yankee clubhouse and start making cell-phone calls to their agents and whispering to the press…
And unless the karma gods decide to spend the summer in a diabetic coma, it’s almost certainly what’s going to happen to this year’s Yankees. God, is it going to be fun to see. Nothing is more entertaining than watching the rich choke on their own greed.”
Now this would be all fine and good and consistent with Taibbi’s populist railings against the Goldman Sachs of the world, except for one thing: Taibbi has a very personal bone to pick with the Yankees as a die hard Red Sox fan. And that simple fact reduces his entire argument to rubble.
When you root for the JP Morgan’s of baseball, it’s awfully hard to construct a credible diatribe against baseball’s Goldman Sachs. The Red Sox have a payroll of over $120 million dollars a year. While many New Englanders may convince themselves that their team is secretly constructing a socialist paradise in which the fans own the team and all share in the gains of Glorious Red Sox Nation, reality begs to differ. To nearly every other team in Major League Baseball, the Red Sox are the big, bad, free-agent acquiring vampire squid.
This is because the Red $ox (along with every other big market team) play the same game as everyone else. They get the free agents they can afford to sign, they pay the scouts they can afford to send to the baseball havens of the world, and they sign the best possible TV and ad deals that their popularity warrants, to generate payroll money.
Want to grumble about the teams that do this best? At the very least I would hope you are from Pittsburgh, Minneapolis, or Tampa Bay. At least then the disparities are consistent with your point of view.
In the meantime, Yankee Universe will continue to support the team that most actively participates in Socialismball by subsidizing the rest of the league. That would be said Yankees, to the tune of $27 million, this year. Workers of the baseball world, unite!