The 'stache I can deal with, thank God we won't have to worry about that goatee. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

Please Don't Hate Kevin Youkilis


Chris broached this topic last week, but I wanted to add my two cents.

I completely understand Yankee fans hating Kevin Youkilis. However, if you’re going to hate him please hate him for the right reasons.

The first thing most Yankee fans bring up is Youk’s affiliation with the 2004 Red Sox and everything that went down that postseason. Fair enough. That’s enough to make any NYY supporter cringe. There’s one thing you should know though: HE DIDN’T EVEN PLAY IN THAT ALCS OR THE ENSUING WORLD SERIES! It’s true, look it up. In fact, he only had two at-bats in game 2 of the ALDS against the Angels, and wasn’t even on the roster for the ALCS.

If you want to get technical, here are some more fun facts about Youk and The Series That Shall Not Be Spoken Of:

  • Jose Canseco was more an integral part of the 2000 World Series (one AB) than Youkilis was to the ’04 World Series.
  • A.J. Burnett had more at-bats in the 2009 World Series (one) than Youk did in the ’04 Fall Classic.
  • Andy Pettitte drove in more runs in the 2009 World Series than Youk did the ENTIRE ’04 postseason.

Now, if you want to hate Kev for the 2007 title along with his nine-year tenure in Boston, be my guest. But just know that he wasn’t one of the “idiots” responsible for ’04. As I said before, if you’re going to hate him do yourself a favor and hate him for the right reasons.

With regards to hating him, please don’t. Chris hit the nail on the head in his post:

In my mind as soon as the New York Yankees sign, trade for or draft a player he becomes someone I will root for. As a fan of the team, I want each player to be successful during their time in pinstripes. I have no interest in holding a grudge against a player who used to play for the enemy…

Perfect.

I understand why fans hate him, I really do, but holding a grudge when the guy is trying to help your team win is beyond stupid. It’s kind of a stupid quote to bring up here, because this is just sports which don’t really matter in the grand scheme of things, but Nelson Mandela once said, “Hating someone is like swallowing poison hoping it kills the other person.” This certainly isn’t what Mandela had in mind when he said that, but it still applies. Let bygones be bygones; he used to play for the Sox and now he doesn’t. Get over it.

Furthermore, if we fans can let Johnny Damon, Roger Clemens and Wade Boggs (among others) into our hearts, then why can’t we do the same for Kevin Edmund Youkilis? After all, if Joba can bury the hatchet shouldn’t we fans do the same?

The last thing I’ll say about Youk is this: Feel free to complain that it was a dumb signing because it’s too much money for a player that has seen many of his numbers fall the past few years and whom UZR and WAR aren’t too fond of, but don’t complain because he’s a former Red Sock.

I, for one, am looking forward to the “YOUUUUUUK” chants in 2013.

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