|Yankee Stadium - August 2009|
Growing up in the greater New York area, I've supported the Yankees since childhood and was fortunate enough to watch them win 4 World Series between the years of 1996 and 2000. I've always felt so proud and fortunate to be a member of the Yankee community, given the team's rich (no pun intended) history, with such accomplished players as Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, and Mickey Mantle, and countless others who have shaped America's pastime.
My adolescent years as a Yankee fan were frustrating at times. After watching those late 1990s teams succeed so naturally, I experienced the first disappointments of a baseball fan whose team has lost year after year, not quite able to synchronize their playing. I understood what fans of other franchises had gone through, and my appreciation for my team's past accomplishments deepened. I continued supporting the Yankees when it was most challenging, notably, when they lost the pennant to the Boston Red Sox in 2004, a loss that transformed southwestern CT into Red Sox Nation just in time for my college years in Massachusetts.
For the record, I forged great friendships at Holy Cross with fans on both sides of baseball's greatest rivalry. It's interesting, though, that the Yankees did not win another World Series until after I gradauted and moved back to the tri-state area. Furthermore, they won in the final year of this decade, at their new stadium, inaugurated this season. Is this a sign I should stay in New York City? Is it safe to include Fairfield County in Yankees Universe again? What will happen in seasons to come? I wonder. I know for certain, though, while team destinies may come and go, team loyalties are forever.