They don’t call them the Evil Empire for nothing. The Toronto Star is reporting that “Security guards employed by the Yankees, who travelled with the team to Toronto this weekend, pointed out and requested the ejection of a pair of Jays fans who had heckled the Yankee bullpen, according to a ticket holder in the section.” Because apparently, it’s only okay to heckle the bullpen when Yankees fans do it.
Wait, back up a second. Yankees security got fans kicked out of the Rogers Centre in Toronto!? Do they even have the authority to do that? As one blogger who bared witness—and later filed a complaint—wrote, “I and many others in our section witnessed two individuals in Yankees jackets, complete with Yankees lanyard ID tags walk into our seating area and point out to Toronto police two fans who were chirping and heckling the Yankees bullpen. One individual, who was later violently arrested, did nothing but look at these two Yankees ‘men in black.’” Then again, just looking at someone the wrong way can get a man killed in The Big Apple—back in the 70’s, maybe.
Now, here’s where versions of events differ. The offended blogger writes that the ejected fans simply “told the Yankees bullpen staff they sucked, booed them, creatively chirped them and then, as if a threat to the safety of these players, these fans were removed by police, one bloodied and arrested.” But the supposed NYYPD has a different story, telling the Star, “that the fans were not only heckling, but throwing peanuts into the Yankees’ bullpen as well,” adding “that later in the game someone threw a full beer from the second deck.” And the second-deck beer actually hit the pitchers warming up!? Perhaps the Jays could use that guy in their bullpen!
Now, I wasn’t at the game on Friday—hell, I didn’t even watch it on TV—but you’d hafta wonder that if fans were indeed throwing their hard-earned peanuts and crackerjacks into the pen, how come the venue security didn’t see this? Why did it take Yankees security to finger them for ejection… and hell, why do the Yankees even need security on the road, anyways? As blogger/complainant Justin Jackson put it, “they are so audacious as to bring in their hired goons to keep Mariano Rivera from having to hear that he’s super old. News flash: he is.” But y’know, don’t tell Rivera that, cuz you might get ejected…
The grand irony in all this is that Yankees fans are known for being some of the most vocal and abusive in all of sports. I’d love to see what would happen if a pair of Jays fans kindly suggested that Yankee Stadium security remove a group of Bleacher Creatures after an unwelcoming rendition of their homophobic Village People parody, “Why Are You Gay?” Chances are, the home security would laugh in their faces, not allegedly punch them as they allegedly do on the road. (At least, I’m presuming that one guy didn’t give himself a bloody nose…)
Then again, if you can’t beat ‘em (up), join ‘em. Methinks the Jays could hire hockey enforcers Colton Orr and Frazer McLaren to eject hecklers behind the Jays pen at Yankee Stadium. I mean, it’s not like the Leafs are going deep in the playoffs or anything… :P