Accept it: Kevin Youkilis is a Yankee

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Not even one full day into his first day at spring training, the few sentences said by Yankees third baseman Kevin Youkilis sent fans and the media into a frenzy. Likely a few hours after he was sized for his pinstripes, Youk was telling reporters he’d always be a Boston Red Sox.

He’s learned now, but that’s a big no-no and certainly not something that will go unnoticed in the big New York spotlight. Of course, his allegiance to Boston spread all over the back pages of newspapers was not the only quote he gave, but it was the only one people cared about.

Already on Yankees fan’s bad side, Kevin Youkilis said he will always remember the first nine seasons of his baseball career, which just so happened to take place with the Bombers’ biggest rival. Two World Series rings, three All Star appearances, a Gold Glove and Hank Aaron Award, and he is being ridiculed for saying he enjoyed what he accomplished there? Are fans truly clinging to any little thing he says that sounds the slightest anti-Yankee? That is truly pathetic.

Now, there’s not a fiber in my body that tells me a clean-shaven Kevin Youkilis wearing our beloved Yankee pinstripes is right. This is not a plea of defense nor show of love to the  guy who batted .235 last season and yet received $12 million, from an apparently penny-pinching Yankees front office. But it’s just me accepting it.

Many people have brought up the argument that players like Sparky Lyle, Wade Boggs, Roger Clemens, and Johnny Damon all started out as hated rivals in Beantown, and ended up becoming fan favorites [and more importantly, World Series champions] in the Bronx. Did any fan really expect those four “idiots” to put on the pinstripes, play with Yankee pride and partake in some of the greatest moments the team has ever had? I don’t think so.

I’ll give you a moment to reminisce about Sparky’s 1977 Cy Young season. Or Boggs riding the horse after ’96. Don’t forget Clemens’ postseason dominance either. Or Damon’s double-steal.

That is not my number one point, but it largely contributes to the idea that fans need to just wait and see what happens this season. The fact is, no one knows what Kevin Youkilis will do for the Yankees this year. I don’t expect anything outstanding, but I don’t expect anything horrible either.

Yankees fans have been considered vulgar, ignorant, downright stupid and clueless in the past. They have also been known as classy, every now and then, for cheering for whoever is wearing the pinstripes. I’m not a fan of A-Rod and a number of guys on the team. But I still support them and cheer for them. Why? Because they’re Yankees. And Kevin Youkilis is now one too.

So forget what he was, as he is now a player for our favorite team. Forgive and forget. Give him a chance. All those statements and more apply. The fact is, you don’t know anything until you know everything. Who knows what these upcoming 162 games have in store for Youk. Only time will tell. Not me or you.

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About Brian D.

A passionate 15-year old Yankees fan who has hopes of becoming an MLB journalist or broadcaster. He brings an optimistic, yet realistic take on the Yanks to Yankees Fans Unite, and essentially lives and breathes baseball.

Posted on February 17, 2013, in Analysis, Personal Opinion, Rants, Spring Training and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. So true why pay a man 12 million bones when he hasn’t been healthy in 3 seasons. Especially when you are “penny pinching”

  2. I think signing Youkilis was a good move. They desperately needed a 3B and a RH power bat and got both of those without having to add anything to the 2014 payroll.

    I like David Adams a lot and think he can be a solid MLB player but going into the season with him as the 3B would be too risky. he needs more reps at 3B and needs to show he can stay healthy.

    Youk will spend some time on the DL but he’s still played at least 100-120 games the last 3 yrs with injuries. The Yanks will give him some rest at the DH spot and I think he’s going to have a bounce back year.

    • Definitely. I have high hopes for him, but even if it doesn’t work out you can’t just give up on him at this point. He seems proud and determined to have a solid year with the Yankees. Anxiously looking forward to seeing him play.

  3. Brian, I totally dissagree with you on Youk, he was the best choice for the Yanks at this point in time. Fans get too caught up on players who come from other teams. Boggs, Damon, and others have proven you wrong in the past. Youk will be a good addition to this years team, a team of veteran players who know how to play the game, what more could you ask for. Next year their will be a filtration of younger players from in house that you can count on, I think.

  4. I completely agree with you Brian! Everyone is just looking for a story to taint Youkilis further. The “My Heart Will Always Be with the Red Sox.” quote was taken completely out of context, but what does the media do? They take that quote so that they can get a story and cause controversy. There was nothing wrong with the quote. Like you told me on Twitter this morning, it would be the same thing if Derek Jeter went to the Red Sox and said “I’ll Always be a Yankee.”

  5. Youkilis is a Yankee now but, without the media having their normal guy to write about they have Youk now. Fans, forget what the media says about the Yankees players and concentrate on how well they play…or not!

  6. I don’t mind Youk as a Yankee. He is a “gamer” ( I can’t stand that word but couldn’t get around it) He plays hard and you don’t see many mental mistakes with him. He is a good fit at this time with the club.

    I don’t care where a player comes from once he is a Yankee I root for him.

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