The Yankees introduced Giancarlo Stanton on Monday, and by any measure, the press conference was exactly what you would expect. Stanton was clean shaven and smiling, and he dutifully put on the pinstripes with his new number in front of a group of media there to see what he would say about his new home.
It all went according to plan, with the exception of a few digs at the Marlins from Stanton. Other than that, it was a normal affair. Good soundbites, everyone happy to be there, Aaron Boone looking at Stanton like he is about to propose on the Brooklyn Bridge during a light snowfall.
You know, normal things.
Which is why we’re here, because the entire thing was so normal that it brought back that old but reliable feeling: damn, the Yankees are doing Yankees things again.
We’re back, baby! It’s the cusp of 2018 and we’ve returned to the status quo in which every time I think about what the Yankees are doing I get a bitter taste in my mouth and want to throw darts at a photo of Brian Cashman shaking Giancarlo Stanton’s hand. The news is such a parade of numbing world events that the Yankees returning to their Evil Empire ways is actually comforting.
They never lost that mojo completely, but we’re coming off an entire season of baseball fans realizing that the Yankees were more than likable and trying to resist the urge to root for them. Well, we’re on the other side of that brief but discomfiting era now and doesn’t it feel better?
Personally, it feels great. The baseball world was off its axis and now we can all find comfort in the fact that the Yankees can luck into Giancarlo Stanton because the Marlins are inept, right before Brian Cashman does a deal with the Pirates that will help the Yankees way more than it will help Pittsburgh.
And the whole time Aaron Boone will be sitting at the bar smiling like he knows a secret but won’t share it. And that secret is “we’re better than you.”
I can’t even be mad at the Yankees for pulling this off. It’s in their nature. I’m thankful. The Goo Goo Dolls have to bleed just to know they’re alive, and I have to watch the Yankees win another World Series behind MVP Giancarlo Stanton to love baseball. It’s how things work.
Every move Cashman pulls off at the Winter Meetings to make the Yankees more of a juggernaut (without having to make any sacrifices or weaken the team’s position with next year’s free agent class) will only make me feel more alive inside. I’m a little bitter, but more than that I’m grateful for the reminder that the Yankees will always be the Yankees and we will always have to watch that happen.
Hal Steinbrenner is saying things like “New York is a marquee town” that needs “marquee players” and Aaron Boone is talking about their “special culture” and oh god I want to puke a little bit but I’m also happy about it?
I look at this quote...
Giancarlo Stanton said that when he signed his 13-year deal with Miami, he “absolutely” expected to one day play for the Yankees.— Bryan Hoch (@BryanHoch) December 11, 2017
...and can’t help but laugh because of course that’s the case.
Of course Stanton was always going to fall into the Yankees’ lap without them having to gut their group of top prospects or get pushed too far into the luxury tax. Of course we all assumed he was going to the Dodgers to play in front of a hometown crowd but the lure of those classy pinstripes proved too strong for him to turn down. Of course the Marlins botched this situation so severely that the Yankees barely had to break a sweat to pull this off.
It’s good to know that if we’re all in a simulation right now, it’s working smoothly. Things seemed to be glitching for a bit, but we’re back on track.
If the Stanton signing wasn’t enough for you to get worked up about the Yankees being the Yankees, just look at this picture and pretend it’s Bryce Harper a year from now smiling from ear to ear because he just signed a $320 million contract and is about to have his picture projected on the side of the Empire State Building.
That’s absolutely going to happen and we’re all going to be annoyed about it. But that feels good, right?