No surprise that Nick Swisher’s postgame comments about the Yankee Stadium fans are generating some buzz.
“(Saturday) night was pretty (bad),” Swisher said. “A lot of people saying a lot of things that I’ve never heard before. Prime example: I missed that ball in the lights and the next thing you know, I’m the reason that Jeter got hurt. It’s kind of frustrating. … To go through a stretch like this where it’s kind of a negative attitude, a negative-type setting, that’s tough. But hey, that’s part of the game. Rightfully so. There are a lot of expectations here and I guess when you don’t get the job done, you’re going to hear about it.”
To be honest, I’ve never understood the booing. Not for the home team. Not when the crowd wants them to play well. It seems counter productive, but this weekend, the booing was hard to ignore and hard to overlook.
“That’s the last thing that I ever thought would be in this ballpark, that people would get on you that bad,” Swisher said. “Especially your home, where your heart is, where you’ve been battling and grinding all year long. It’s just frustrating, man. You never want to be in that spot. It’s not like you’re trying to go out there and do bad on purpose. It’s just tough, man.”
Lack of hustle. Not working hard. Giving up on a play. Those things deserve to be booed. Those deserve a message sent loud and clear. But I just don’t understand how it’s helpful to boo a fly ball to left or a grounder to second. Maybe fans need to vent, but I’m not sure that’s going to help a player get through a slump and perform.
“It hurts,” Swisher said. “Sometimes I’m a sensitive guy and some of the things people say, they get under your skin a little bit. I’ve been lucky to be here for the past four years, bro. We’re not going to go out like this. We’re going to go to Detroit and give everything we’ve got.”
Swisher, Curtis Granderson, Robinson Cano and Alex Rodriguez seemed to take the brunt of it this weekend, for obvious reasons. Their offensive numbers are the worst of the bunch, and it’s those offensive struggles that have the Yankees in a two-game hole.
“I mean, we haven’t scored a run in a long time,” said Rodriguez, who’s booed on the road nearly every at-bat. “I’m right there with ‘em. You can’t blame them. I wish you could blame, you can’t blame our fans. We got to go out there and score runs.”
That’s perfectly true, and I tend to think the Yankees would be well aware of it without the home crowd letting them hear about it.
My question to you is this: Do you boo when the Yankees struggle? If so, why? Is it strictly to voice displeasure? Is it to send a message that the players aren’t working hard enough? Is it to send a message to the front office? Obviously players have to have thick skin about this stuff — it comes with the job, and they all know that going in — but I wonder if I’m in the minority here in thinking it’s counterproductive.
“As the game progresses, you’re trying to go up there and get a hit,” Swisher said. “If you don’t, people let you know about it. It’s a tough spot. Hey man, I guess that’s playing in New York.”
Associated Press photo