The Houston Astros are the 2022 World Series champions. Yes, fellow Yankee fans, it has to be said out loud. With this comes natural emotions that fans have to sort out, and they may not be as clear-cut as one would assume. While Yankees frustrations certainly started in 2017, it’s time to look forward.
Understanding Yankees Frustration
Yankee fans that are upset with the Astros winning have to be honest and call it what it is: Yankee fans do not hate the ‘22 Astros, they hate the ‘17 Astros, and project the lingering hate on to the current team. In truth, there are two notable Astros for even Yankee fans to feel happy about. Those being fan favorite Dusty Baker finally winning a managerial World Series, and cancer survivor Trey Mancini getting to enjoy the ultimate prize that the game has to offer. Simply put, if you hate the Astros in 2022, it is because you hate the uniform and the owner. But hey, that is not unreasonable.
If Yankee fans are looking for any kind of 2017 revenge, they certainly got it in the form of absolutely shutting down any offensive contribution from Jose Altuve. Other than a game 2 run home run by Alex Bregman, remnants of 2017 were barely contributing factors in the American League Championship Series. The Yankees were beaten by all-new Astros. Again, the only similarity is the uniform and the owner.
Not Forgetting the Past
That"s not to say that Yankee fans should forgive the ‘17 Astros, but that fans need to recognize that the punishment they long for is not coming. The window for revenge is gone, and will not return. All of this could have been avoided if ‘17 Astros players had been punished by the commissioner in a way that fawns see as fitting.
Make no mistake about it, the Astros front office was punished, but let’s be honest, fans do not care about them. Fans care about players far more than they care about GM’s, managers, or draft picks. By players not being punished, it creates the illusion to fans that punishment did not exist.
As a result, Yankee fans understandably beg for the appearance of karma. The sense of incompletion is what eats fans up more than a clean ‘22 Astros championship ever will.
An Unshakable Stench
Likewise, there is a blunt reality that Astros fans must face as well: winning the ‘22 World Series does not in any way legitimize the ‘17 World Series in the eye of (probably) most baseball fans. This is true because, as stated before, there are very little remains of the ‘17 team in the ‘22 team. Yankee fans, and most baseball fans, acknowledge that the Astros were the rightful championship this past year. But this does not change the fact that phrase "Trashtros" will always linger on the history of the franchise no matter what.
To be honest, it is exhausting that the topic of the cheating scandal always comes up when the Astros are successful. It is also equally as exhausting to have been conditioned to question legitimacy of not only the Astros, but any successful team or player ever since. The true punishment of the Astros cheating scandal is the Pandora’s box of suspicion and paranoia that has been opened on the entire sport.
Ending Yankees Frustrations
It"s hard to know how or when Yankees fandom will move on. My guess, is when Judge is no longer a Yankee, and Altuve is no longer an Astro. Perhaps to change how they are viewed in the baseball universe, Astros owner Jim Crane should re-brand the entire Astros" uniform to symbolically move beyond the past and escape the shadow of the cheating by eliminating its symbolism.
Their City Connect uniform provided him with the perfect launching pad to do that. However, it seems that Jim Crane wants to be a troll and remind everybody, just so he can rub 2022 in everyone’s faces. To Jim Crane, it is about disproving allegations of 2017. That’s all it is, was, and ever will be for all parties involved: the year 2017.
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