Bronx, NY: This past week, Major League Baseball’s New York Yankees thwarted the third longest World Series Championship slump of their franchise’s history by defeating the Philadelphia Phillies in 6 games. This marked the Yankees 27th championship, the most of any professional United States sports team, excluding Alaska, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico.
“It was such a huge relief. Now I know how Boston Red Sox fans felt in 2004, and how New York Ranger fans felt when they killed the ‘1940’ curse in 1994,” stated Yankees fan Neil Tropski. “8 years? It’s a lifetime.”
The championship droughts that were longer were from 1963-1976 and 1981-1995. Not coincidentally, these spans of time brought other historical challenges, such as the Vietnam War, an earlier global recession, and the invention of casual parachute pants.
It had been a long and torturous road for many Yankees fans these past 8 years. Many believed the team would never win again. Some fans, whose only team clothing was a 2000 World Series Champions T-shirt, feared fraying due to being unable to buy a more recent championship shirt. Others had forgotten what a ticker-tape parade in the Canyon of Heroes was like.
“Did they even have cars back then to pull the parade floats? I can’t remember,” one Yankee fan reminisced.
The Yankees organization went through many changes to finally break the championship drought. Although new management and a better roster may have helped, owner George Steinbrenner had other thoughts. “The only reason I had the new Yankee Stadium built was to stir things up a bit. The team needed a change in scenery, so we moved across the street in the Bronx. And it worked!” stated Mr. Steinbrenner. “Now I plan to move the team to a new stadium every 5 years that the team neglects to bring us a championship.”
Many New Yorkers, and other Yankees fans, were deeply affected by the championship drought. New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani dropped his campaign for re-election after the Yankees championship streak was broken, giving rise to Michael Bloomberg. Former president George Bush was heard exclaiming that “I blame Saddam for game 7, not Mariano,” before sending troops to Iraq after the Yankees lost to the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Both stock-brokers and other economic analysts even blame the latest economic turmoil on the Yankees failing to win the World Series for 8 years. Some even believed that the world was coming to an end.
“There are a lot environmental tendencies engaged in Yankee championships,” state geologist and long-time Yankee fan Charles Kriegel. “Water currents, oxygen, even our orbit around the sun are intertwined with the Yankees. Who knows what may have happened if they went another 2 years without a World Series win? It could have torn apart the very fabric of existence.”