We’ve heard the “Yankees suck!” chant for years. Indeed, we’ve heard it so much that it has basically lost all effectiveness as taunting, becoming noticeable only when it’s used in pathetic fashion, like say, at a New England Revolution-New York Red Bulls soccer game.
But it’s apparently a problem for the virgin eyes and ears down in St. Petersburg, because according to this story in the Tampa Tribune, Rays officials made a Rays season ticket holder remove his “Yankees Suck” t-shirt at a game last week because it allegedly constituted profanity. When the fan — a lawyer, natch — objected to the usher telling him to do so, he asked to talk to a team official. No Rays official would talk to him, so he’s now writing letters and talking to the media about it.
This is not the first time this has happened. I seem to recall a similar ban going on out in Seattle several years ago. There are likely others.
In other news, I never cease to be amazed at the kind of stuff that gets people worked up.
Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY reports that the Mariners have received “strong” trade interest for starter Taijuan Walker. The right-hander is currently on the mend from tendinitis in his right foot. He’ll throw a bullpen on Friday at Wrigley Field with scouts in attendance.
Walker, 23, has a 3.66 ERA with an 80/18 K/BB ratio in 86 innings this season. It’s his first bit of sustained success at the major league level. What’s arguably just as intriguing is the fact that Walker will be under team control through 2020.
The Mariners have been hovering around .500 for the last month and entered Thursday six games behind the first-place Rangers in the AL West and 4.5 games out of the second AL Wild Card slot, behind three other teams as well as the two Wild Card leaders. It’s enough uncertainty which could push the Mariners to sell.
On Monday, we learned that the Mets offered to swap catchers with the Brewers, Travis d'Arnaud for Jonathan Lucroy. The Brewers, as expected, turned that down. The two still continue to discuss a trade involving Lucroy, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports.
The Mets certainly could use some help at catcher. The club has gotten an aggregate .608 OPS from their backstops, the fourth-lowest mark in baseball, ahead of only the Pirates, Rays, and Indians. However, the Mets seem to be behind other teams — including a “mystery” team — in the bidding, according to Jon Heyman of Today’s Knuckleball.
Lucroy, who took Thursday off, is batting .300/.361/.486 with 13 home runs and 50 RBI in 371 plate appearances for the Brewers this season. He can become a free agent after the season if his controlling club opts against picking up his $5.25 million option for the 2017 season.