Are Yankees fans "the best in the world?"

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Not my words.  They’re Lupica’s:

There aren’t fans better than this anywhere in the world. This isn’t about whether or not you love the Yankees. This is about Yankee fans.

There are other baseball fans in other cities, of course, Mets fans in this one. There are fans who come out strong for teams who haven’t won the way the Yankees won, who don’t make the playoffs just about every year the way the Yankees have since Joe Torre first came to town 13 years ago and the winning came back to the Yankees and the Bronx.

But no fans have ever supported a baseball team, the most famous team in this world, the way Yankee fans support theirs.

Saying that any team’s fans are “the best” is obviously an exercise in biases, and there’s no better chance that people are going to agree on this question than they’d agree on religion.  Lupica is a New York guy who writes for a New York paper that is purchased by New York fans.  I have no doubt that he sincerely believes that Yankees fans are the best. But even if he didn’t, it’s not like he’d write that, say, the fans in Minnesota or Milwaukee or (shudder) Boston were better.  Assuming he was even proposing a way to measure it.

I’ll throw this out there though: wouldn’t one way to measure how great a teams’ fans are be to see how well they draw when the team isn’t winning?  Whether the fan base is of the fair weather variety?  If so, is it worth considering the following:

  • The Yankees were 1st in the American League in attendance from 1976-1981, when the team was winning a lot.
  • The Yankees fell out of the top spot in 1982 — to third — and didn’t lead the league again until 2003, finishing as low as 11th a couple of times when the team wasn’t playing well.  This despite the fact that they had one of the larger seating capacities in baseball over that time.
  • Contrast this with the Dodgers, who have only been out of the top 5 in NL attendance once in the last 90 years.  Or the Red Sox who have only been as low as 9th once in their history, despite having the smallest seating capacity in the game for almost all of that history. The Cardinals ranking has been more consistent than the Yankees too.

    I’ll grant that Yankees fans are pretty darn good — and it’s hard to find more knowledgeable fans than Yankees fans — but they’re not necessarily diehards.  Like the fans of most teams, they’ll stay home if the team isn’t winning.

    I’m not saying that disqualifies them from being the best fans in the world, but if I were Mike Lupica, I’d find a way to account for that before making the claim.

    Pirates recall pitcher Glasnow to start against Phillies

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    PITTSBURGH — Right-hander Tyler Glasnow has been recalled from Class AAA Indianapolis and will make his second major league start Saturday when he faces the Philadelphia Phillies.

    Glasnow lost to the Cardinals at St. Louis on July 7, allowing four runs in 5 1/3 innings. He was 7-3 with a 1.94 ERA in 18 starts with Indianapolis.

    Catcher Elias Diaz was also recalled from Indianapolis while right-handed reliever AJ Schugel was optioned to the same club. Catcher Eric Fryer was placed on the paternity list after his wife gave birth to twins – a boy and a girl – on Saturday.

    The 25-year-old Diaz underwent arthroscopic right elbow surgery May 3 after being injured in spring training. He has played in a combined 12 games at three minor leagues, hitting .341, after making his major league debut with the Pirates last September.

    Adams homers in 16th to lift Cardinals over Dodgers 4-3

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    ST. LOUIS — Matt Adams homered in the 16th inning to lead the Cardinals to a 4-3 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Friday night for St. Louis’ season-best fifth straight victory.

    It was the second consecutive game that the Cardinals won in their final at-bat. They beat the Padres on Thursday after scoring a run in the ninth inning.

    Adams homer came with one out off Bud Norris (5-9), who gave up six runs as a starter in an 8-1 loss at Washington on Wednesday.

    Seth Maness (1-2) picked up the win with a scoreless inning of relief for St. Louis, which was playing its longest game of the season.

    Jedd Gyorko hit a two-out homer off closer Kenley Jansen in the ninth to tie the game 3-3.

    Justin Turner and Howie Kendrick homered for the Dodgers. Los Angeles has lost four of six. The red-hot Turner has seven homers and 17 RBI this month. He hit two homers in a 6-3 win over Washington on Thursday.

    Turner blasted his career-high 18th homer of the season off Seung Hwan Oh in the ninth to break a 2-2 tie.

    Corey Seager had four hits and drove in the first run of the game. He had hit in seven successive at-bats before flying out in the ninth.

    Kendrick’s solo shot in the sixth tied the game 2-2. He has hit in 14 successive games trying Colorado’s Charlie Blackmon for the longest current streak in the majors.

    Los Angeles starter Brandon McCarthy allowed one hit and two runs over 6 1-3 innings, the longest of his four starts this season. He left with leg cramps. McCarthy struck out four and walked three.

    St. Louis starter Michael Wacha allowed two runs on 10 hits in six innings. He struck out four and walked one.

    Dodgers reliever Adam Liberatore recorded his 28th successive scoreless outing by retiring two of four batters in the seventh. He has not allowed a run in 41 of 42 appearances this season.