During this upcoming 4th of July weekend, the Yankees and Redsox will meet up to play a four game series in which many consider to be the greatest rivalry in sports. But that brings up the question, is it even an important rivalry anymore?
Don't get me wrong, this rivalry is still great. It features two of the biggest market teams in Boston and New York, several future Hall of Famers including Ortiz, Ramirez, Rodriguez, Jeter, and Posada, an important division match up, and whole lot of hatred for each other. But is it still as intense as it was before?
Lets look at this rivalry more closely. Neither team, for the first time in a long time, is in first place. The Yankees, in fact, are just 45-40 heading into this series while the Red Sox were just swept by the Rays. There is no "Murderers Row" or Babe Ruths in this rivalry. There is no one having "Super" seasons. There are no delayed "paybacks" waiting for either team. There hasn't been any trash talk recently between these two teams. This series has just lost it's luster.
This rivalry gave every true baseball fan a great 100-plus years of Yankees-Redsoxs. "The Curse of the Bambino", the 1986 World Series, Pedro Martinez grabbing Don Zimmer's head and throwing him to the ground, the Yankees stealing A-Rod from the Sox, Varitek giving A-Rod a taste of his glove, the Red Sox's improbable comeback against the Yankees in the 2004 ALCS, and the Yankees five game sweep at Fenway.
But see, there aren't any more story lines like that anymore. Many fans, including myself, just don't care about story lines that consist of "Drew has 3 singles in win over Yankees, now just 3 games back of Tampa". I mean, come on, TAMPA? You know the rivalry has lost luster when the Rays are not just in "contention" for the wildcard, but are actually LEADING the division that consists of two teams that have over a $100 million payroll. The Yankees also lost in the off season a man that made this rivalry so much more interesting: George Steinbrenner. The Yankees are now ran by Hank Steinbrenner who is worse then his father. George Steinbrenner was called "The Boss" because he was respected. Hank Steinbrenner is not respected. Hank Steinbrenner is similar to the boss's wife. The wife that uses his husbands employees just because she can. That's what Hank does. He just makes people sick of him. All Hank has done is upset Red Sox nation, and that's it, but that really doesn't make the rivalry more interesting.
The Redsox-Yankee rivalry provided great memories for the past 100-so years, but I think its time for all of us to open our eyes and see, this rivalry isn't just what it use to be.