The idea that there are two kinds of baseball fans in the world is fully ingrained in society. There are those that like the Yankees and those that hate the Yankees with no room in between. Even President Obama commented on it during the team's trip to the White House on Monday.
It's a situation that everyone is comfortable with. Yankee haters get to hate the Yankees as part of a large group, while Yankee fans use the hatred as a justification for feeling extra good about being a fan of baseball's biggest winner. Even the Yankees seem to enjoy the hatred as it is both good for business and it makes it much easier to act above the rest of the league when everyone already hates you.
All these happy people are about to get their minds blown because the Yankees might not be as hated as we think.
The Nielsen Company has taken a break from monitoring your cable boxes to figure out which major league team inspires the most hatred from the public and, surprise of surprises, the Cleveland Indians come out on top. The Wall Street Journal reports that the outfit has an internet algorithim that analyzes how people feel about certain things, something that forces us to question the validity of either the algorithim or people's true feelings about things they seem to feel quite strongly about.
We're gonna go with the former for a variety of reasons, starting with the fact that you'd have to search far and wide to find many baseball fans with any opinion on the Cleveland nine in any direction. There aren't any particularly notable players, they haven't had too many winning seasons of late and, frankly, just sort of float around in the muddy middle of baseball teams heading in no particular direction. That makes a perverse sort of sense, actually, given that the same could be said of highly rated TV shows like "CSI" and "Two and a Half Men."
There's also the possibility that the readings could be thrown off because of people expressing hatred that has nothing to do with baseball. Could this particular algorithim be overly sensitive to rants out of certain quarters of Karachi? Or is there a strain of anti-Native American sentiment running around the web? Sadly, this may be the case given that the Reds, who are equally unworthy of hatred as the Indians, are the third most-hated team on the list.
On the off chance that this little survey is actually correct, it's time to step things up around here. A world where the Yankees aren't the most hated team in baseball is a world where the bad guys have won. Nobody wants that, least of all the Yankees.