Modern hot-takery being what it is, I wasn’t the least bit surprised to see the MLB Trade Deadline pass and the pundits starting to discuss which team is baseball’s version of the Golden State Warriors. As if winning a title is somehow a big thing.
One national baseball scribe said it was the Los Angeles Dodgers, because trading for a couple of months of Yu Darvish is totally the same thing as signing Kevin Durant as a free agent.
The most outlandish take, however, belonged to Dave Dombrowski, president of baseball operations for the Boston Red Sox. Dombrowski said New York Yankees GM Brian Cashman has turned his team into the Golden State Warriors of baseball after they picked up A’s pitcher Sonny Gray. That added to their trade-deadline haul of Jaime Garcia, Todd Frazier and David Robertson.
Surely there’s a little bit of trolling here. The Yankees-Red Sox rivalry wouldn’t exist without it. But the fact that sports fans are still spouting off their tired Kevin Durant takes all these months later should tell you that they’ll start to believe anything if it’s repeated to them enough. Just like how you start to think that DJ Khaled’s “Wild Thoughts” isn’t a horrible rip-off after the 5,000th time it’s on the radio.
So let’s be clear here: The Yankees are not the Golden State Warriors. There are no Warriors of baseball. But if there were, it wouldn’t be the Yankees. And I go to great lengths to explain why in this week’s installment of my Open Mike video series. As strange as it might seem to be defending the Yankees, here I am.
Whatever stereotypes you have about the Yankees, that’s not them this year. They’re led by a rookie named Aaron Judge who is having a surprising MVP-level season, and a couple of young pitchers in Luis Severino and Jordan Montgomery, who have been forced into making up for Masahiro Tanaka’s terrible season.
The fact that the Yankees are even a threat to the stacked Red Sox says more about the Red Sox than it does the Yankees. The Red Sox have, in theory, one of the best lineups in baseball, which is complemented by what is, in theory, one of the best rotations in baseball. The Yankees have some young dudes playing above their heads, Starlin Castro, Aaron Hicks and a pretty good bullpen.
Kudos to the Red Sox for one thing, however. They’ve managed to make the Yankees look like likable underdogs.
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