20 Sep

As the Yankees pay tribute to their deceased owner tonight in the Bronx, one has to wonder how the game and how the city would’ve been different if history took a different turn.

Steinbrenner, before becoming principal owner of the Yankees, had his heart on owning his hometown Cleveland Indians.It was a done deal in Steinbrenner’s mind.

As the sale fell through, the Yankees positioned eventually opened. The Yankees new owner would invest profits from his shipping industry to build a championship ball club and change the business of baseball.

If Steinbrenner owned the Indians, the direction of the Yankees would’ve went in a different direction. Depending on the owner, the Yankees were a struggling franchise owned by CBS and unless another owner came in with deep pockets and a willingness to spend, the history of this franchise would’ve been surely different.

The Indians may have been the Yankees as there is no reason to believe Steinbrenner would have spent less. The lure of the city may have changed some free agent’s minds, but it was and is always about the money which brings big names to certain teams.

As the Mets look back at the Steinbrenner legacy, excluding a handful of years in the mid-1980s when Steinbrenner spent money foolishly and the Mets recaptured the city, it has been a Yankees town. The Mets have been the little brother, always a move or two behind.

The Yankees drew the big stars and played the games under the biggest of lights. From the size of the new sandlots to the size of the payrolls, the Yankees were and are always bigger under Steinbrenner’s reign.

Steinbrenner changed the game and pushed the Mets to second in a town of number ones. He sold history and legacy and blank checks while the Mets couldn’t match any of the above.

It may have been a different story if Steinbrenner was an Indian and the Mets may have never developed an inferiority complex that has haunted this team for decades.

As the Yankees unveil a monument to their deceased owner, they continue the legacy he started. The Mets look on, still waiting for an owner or a day that changes their path in history to make the little brother the biggest show in town.


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