As noted this morning, News Corp and the New York Yankees are now awfully cosy. This news does not sit well with all Yankees fans, most notably our own Craig Robinson. Seems Craig is now in search of a new team. Follow his process as he seeks a new rooting interest. Enjoy!

Hit the jump for the final decision!

Comments (96)

  1. This was awesome.

  2. Unreal. And then he chooses the Mariners. Perfection.


    Also – great post.

  4. That was a lot of fun to read!

  5. Awesome post. Of course I was rooting for you to pick the Jays but understand the reasoning. The Rogers Center itself is reason enough not to root for them.

    Was hoping for the Pirates to make the final cut. Good luck with the Mariners.

  6. Ah, you have taken yourself from a team that has won the most championships in professional sport, to a team that has never played a a World Series game. Interesting. Looking forward to next year!

  7. Yay! I must admit I was sad when you didn’t pick Toronto, but happy that you picked my second team – Seattle’s awesome, the Mariners organization is one of the best in baseball, and Safeco is like a second home.

  8. Wow. That was great, though I definitely thought it would be the Cubs.

  9. That was a great process with an oddly satisfying result. Craig, your reasons for cheering on the Mariners (without considering why you rejected the other 29 teams) are very much the same sort of reasons why most baseball fans choose their favourite teams.

    • Thank you. The Pacific Northwest is where I lived when I was living in the States, and Seattle is really the closest thing to a home town team.

  10. Lots of fun! Go Seattle (though in my heart it’s Blue Jays forever!)!

  11. Mariners? Poor unfortunate soul. awesome post

  12. Great post as always. Good for you in taking a stand on moral grounds. Not sure I could switch allegences myself but my hat’s off to you for trying and one less Yankees fan is an upside for the rest of us. But – the Mariners? Time zone would kill it for me. On a positive note you get King Felix and a beautiful ballpark. If we got a new park would you reconsider the brand new Toronto Blue Jays?

  13. Larry. Bernandez.
    That should have ended it right there.

  14. Brilliant post. You’re still welcome to come up to Toronto and check to see whether your old flame has put on weight or gotten herself into bikini shape.

  15. This was incredible. Boom.

  16. I think the Mariners are a good choice, well done. This was a great read.

    You know why the Giants are a hip choice right now? Because it’s SO DAMN FUN being a Giants fan these days.

  17. Followed Rob Neyer’s link to here. Fine choice, and you already have one thing to cheer about: the Mariners have DFA’d Chone Figgins.

  18. What a fun read. Maybe the Mariners will learn how to hit for you.

  19. Gotta say, eliminating the Jays because you don’t want to see the ex-girlfriend 19 times a season is weak sauce. You need to get a new girlfriend, a better one who you can show off and make the old one green with envy. To ever really forget, you need to look your one-time love in the eye, not avert your gaze. When you avert your gaze, she wins.

  20. When I was a kid my second favourite team was always the Atlanta Braves (1992 was pretty awesome for me). I’ve realized over the past several years that I really don’t care for the Barves anymore, for a number of reasons, not the least of which is the racism that I was too naive to understand as a kid.

    I think I need to use Craig’s model here for a similar exercise to find my new “other” team (mistress?)

  21. So, if the White Sox lose Hawk, do they make the finals?

  22. The suspense nearly killed me, but I should have seen it coming. Glad that you saw the light despite Seattle’s incessant drizzle.

  23. I really enjoyed this. I thought I was going to be faced with a similar decision. I have been a Leafs fan for five decades, but there was talk that they were going to trade for Tim Thomas.
    I think the lockout may have saved me. If not, beware Leafdom, if Thomas ever plays for the Blue and White, I have decided to shift my allegance to the Ottawa Senators. That should make them sit up and take notice.

  24. Not sure I understand how you support any MLB team when News Corp gives $500 million to the league for TV rights. Even the Mariners would get $16 million a year from News Corp.

    • It’s a tough one. But I’m not gonna let them ruin the whole sport for me. Mental gymnastics, I know, but it makes sense in my brain. I will still watch the World Series and NLCS even though they are on Fox, and I will still love “Moulin Rouge!” even though it was produced by 20th Century Fox.

      • Craig, great work. But you can’t leave us! News Corp is as vile and nefarious as they come, and it saddens me that they are somewhat in business with the Yankees, but keep in mind that their association is just temporary. One day the two will no longer be in business with one another. We got to wait it out ! A relationship with a sports team is similar to a friendship. When your friend does something stupid, like start a bar fight – and he’s in the wrong for doing so- you’re going to stick with him and defend him anyway, knowing he’s being an idiot.

        And what’s the difference between supporting the Yankees and watching Moulin Rouge? Or watching the Simpsons, Star Wars, X-Men movies, or Family Guy?

  25. ” The post-season is my least favorite season” Derpy derp

  26. Sounds like an excuse for a Yankees fan to jump off the bandwagon while the gettin’s good to me!

  27. The decision to eliminate the Reds is absurd. Great history, great team, great time to become a fan.

    • Life can be absurd. I don’t dislike the Reds at all. Their park looks great, I loved Joe Pos’ book about the Big Red Machine, and bought the DVD box of the Reds-Red Sox World Series. I like them, but it just didn’t feel right.

      • Cincinnati is a racially divided shit hole. It is to Black and White relations what Phoenix is to Latino immigration reform. Seattle is a great choice. One of the most ethical choices an MLB fan can make.

  28. Wow. As a long-suffering Seattle sports fan, I don’t know if I should offer congratulations or condolences. Can’t believe someone would choose to root for the Ms. That said, they have a new TV contract coming up in 2015, and current ownership will has to give way to one of our local billionaires at some point (right?). They’ve gone over 30 years with very limited success. I’m 100% certain that within the next 60 years they’ll make the playoffs again. Even the Cubs have been in multiple playoffs over the past 100 years.

  29. Going with #8Org!

  30. On a long enough time-line, the Yankees will do something to piss off everyone. For me, it was hiring private investigators to dig up dirt on Dave Winfield’s family. Anybody who is still a Yankees fan doesn’t know enough about baseball, or the world.

  31. Real good stuff. Fun way to kill time during a slow work day. Great job.

  32. Great post Craig.

    When i first started watching Football, Steve Heighway was my hero. I thus followed Liverpool, until his career was finishing and the eleven-year-old me decided my new favourite player was Paul McGrath and then I followed Man U. Subsequently, Liverpool continued their successful ways and United were a laughing stock for years until Murdoch and Sky, Which is when I stopped really following a team in England.

    What is rare is wonderful, and when the Mariners click and you have a sustained emotional investment with them, it will all be worth it.

    I choose the Jays in 2005 and am happy to have done so..

    • It was Kenny Dalglish for me. I loved him, and still do. It wasn’t really a massive success, but I did get a bit weep-y when he returned as manager.

  33. Good call! Feel free to join us Mariners fans over at, home of Jeff Sullivan and Matthew Carruth (and not related to the News Corp), as we follow the M’s into the 2013 season.

    • I concur! Lookout Landing is where it’s at for real Mariner fans! Jeff and Matthew do some interesting, thought-provoking, and witty commentary on the past, present, and future of our beloved (and somewhat anemic) team. Plus the forums are a blast!

      Hope to see you soon!

  34. Don’t like Nolan Ryan’s face? Ya ought to be buggy whipped.

    A very fascinating article with a lot of originality. I thought I was going to hate the article to begin with and wound up really enjoying it.

    But… the Mariners?

  35. Let me see if I follow: Your moral convictions prevent you from cheering for a team that has a business partnership with FOX. I’m with you so far.

    Your new team is the Mariners. The holder of the Mariners’ broadcast rights? FOX Sports Network Northwest.

    So, ummm, what network are you going to watch the games on?

    • Dear Asher, the holder of the Mariner’s Broadcast rights is “Root Sports”, not FSN. They changed over in 2010, sorry!
      A lifelong Seattle Mariners fan from Seattle, WA.

  36. I became a Premier League fan a few years ago and after hearing about the Hillsborough tragedy, I researched it. The stories of some of the survivors, the background of it and the cover-up is amazing. It is such a shame how the victims were blamed for the tragedy for so many years and how many errors were made. It was amazing what it meant to that community when the victims (and other fans) were finally relieved of any wrong doing.

    Another reason for me to hate the Yankees

    • Yep. Took 23 years for the truth to finally come out. Families and Liverpudlians kept on fighting for justice all that time. It’s heartbreaking.

  37. terrible choice. the mariners are shit

  38. If you’re leaving Yankees fandom for a political reason, then you were never a real Yankees fan anyway. And you’re a suspect fan for any team you now root for. Plus you’ve shown yourself to be a boring tool, like so many hipster windbags on the Internet these days (excluding me). Go Yankees!!!

  39. I was upset that the Tigers were eliminated so out of hand, but then I saw that they would have been eliminated by the no Fox Sports Regional rule, so it was less disappointing.

  40. YNWA Mate, and J4T96. And the Mariners is never a bad call, because Felix the best.

  41. Have fun not being able to watch Yoenis Cespedes next year for 81 games!

  42. Get a life Craig – You are holding a grudge from 1989 – perhaps you should get a mental health check, honestly that’s not healthy man.

    Waste of time article.

    • Best comment. Love it.

    • Fred, I’m gonna go ahead and assume you have a mother, father, brothers, sisters, cousins, friends. Imagine one of those people died in a stadium tragedy. Then imagine the other fans of that team were falsely accused of what Liverpool fans were accused of in the biggest selling newspaper in your country. I wasn’t at Hillsborough. I didn’t know any of the victims. But it’s called empathy, dude. And having principles.

      • Loved the whole thing, but there’d be one thing that would keep me from ever picking the Mariners: Geoff Baker. IMO start all over again after reading the beat writers for all 30. You won’t end up a Jays fan, but you won’t end up with M’s either.

        • Jeff Sullivan and Matthew at and Dave Cameron at more than offset any antipathy one might feel about Geoff Baker’s writing.

  43. Very glad to welcome you to the ranks of Mariners fans — specifically, M’s fans who don’t live in Seattle. Another reason to be an M’s fan: two of the best fan blogs, USS Mariner and Lookout Landing.

    • Would love to see you post about the Mariners and how you feel about connecting to your new team. The team started off poorly but has won the last few series — are you excited, or does it still seem strange to be rooting for a new team?

  44. Come over to Lookout Landing and do a FanPost, we’d love to welcome you properly over thataway.

    • Thanks, Chris. Just did the membership log in thing, so I look forward to seeing you there.

  45. Awesome post!
    I love the process! Having been born in NY and now reside in Seattle, I am constantly in conflict between my two loves, the Yanks and Mariners. Good luck to you!

  46. I don’t know if it’s Craig’s or Drew’s doing, but I really like that the files are called “craig-apostasy-I” and “craig-apostasy-II”. Nice touch.

  47. A team with a trident, but no horns or tails.

  48. Weird that you are trying to keep live games an option, but then choose a west coast team playing night games over a midwest team playing day games which means you could watch most games live at dinner time (1:20 pm plus 6 hrs)

    • Time zone *would* be an issue if I still lived in Europe, but I live in Mexico, so it’s not really a factor any more.

  49. As a New Yorker I’m kinda sad that my beloved Yankees lost yet another fan (they’re dropping like flies after the Jays-Marlins trade & the YES-News Corp thing) and that you had the Mets all the way to the end, but went with the Mariners (I’m one of those Yankees fans who have absolutely no hate towards the Mets).

    Still I hope the Seattle experience will be enjoyable as you’ll be able to see a lot more King Felix (until the he gets traded to the Yankees anyway) as well as a lot of what Drew, Dustin and Andrew call prospect porn as time goes on.

    • I’m likely gonna watch a lot of Mets games, too. Their broadcast is very enjoyable. And the time zone difference between the two will allow for lots of east coast fun before M’s games start.

  50. This is so, so much better than when the Sports Guy picked an EPL team.

  51. haha, the Zombie Expos! Brilliant. Forever will the Nationals be known as that.
    Safeco is a great ballpark. Seattle’s a great city. Excellent choice.

  52. Enjoyable stuff! At first I was expecting you as a graphic artist to eliminate all teams with lettering on their caps/logos (which would have left only Toronto, Baltimore, and Cleveland).The Mariners play in a good stadium with topnotch refreshments, and their fans are generally a very decent sort. They’ve certainly been nicer to me than they had to when I drove down there (past B’ham, of course) to see the Blue Jays.

    Unfortunately Craig, there are two pieces of bad news I have to give you. One, it’s going to be a while before the Mariners are a winning team. Two, there are a lot of evil media organizations in this world. Murdoch’s operation is nothing special.

    But a good read nonetheless.

  53. Outstanding, as always.
    Particularly liked the pace with just the right amount of space before the final announcement (and a good, righteous choice it was…….dern da Jankees! Dern them all to heck!).
    But perhaps your best, most salient point was the ultimate overemphasis on the postseason. Frankly, I am a Tiger fan and even if they had won the Series, I would still stand by the notion that nothing beats the somewhat meaningless games of Spring Training. That is baseball.


  54. Very enjoyable, a much more thorough version of my own mental gymnastics involved in picking an MLB team in 2001. Interestingly enough I discarded the Yankees in that process when I discovered they had a commercial agreement with ManU, which as a Liverpool fan immediately made it a no-go. After non-related visits to Boston I loved the “always the bridesmaid, never the bride” mentality of Red Sox fan at the time.

  55. I’m a fellow Brit that has spent the last few years thinking about getting into baseball, having seen bits of World Series during October business trips to the East Coast. This Summer I finally took the plunge and took advantage of my brother-in-law’s wedding to go to my first Major League games in Safeco Field and I am, sad to say, totally smitten with the Mariners, almost to the extent that I feel slightly ashamed when I go to watch my former true love, West Ham United.

    You’ve made a great choice. Welcome to the highs of King Felix and elite pitching prospects and the forlorn hope that Ackley and Smoak will suddenly be able to reach the fences when, for most of last year, they could barely reach the outfield.

    And you’re going to absolutely love Brendan Ryan!

  56. Craig, as a Mets fan, I’m slightly disappointed you didn’t go with them — but I can understand your reasoning and appreciate your insight. I loved this entire post. Good luck with the Mariners!

  57. I found it very interesting in your analysis that you didn’t include league affiliation. Myself, along with most baseball fans I know, feel that the league that was home to the team they grew up with was a “superior” league. I wonder if most people who come to enjoy baseball later in life don’t care so much about which rules their favorite team plays by.

    I went to a lot of games in San Francisco as an adult, and often went on my own. My favorite experience was meeting two English tourists who had never been to a baseball game before. We sat together and enjoyed a classic Giants/Dodgers summer game with Barry Bonds leading a comeback as the crowd got more and more fired up. I don’t know if either of them became baseball fans, but I would argue there’s no better first game to experience. They both said that the pace, action, and crowd experience were as good as any football match in England, and that the game was a million times better than cricket, which they dismissed as irrelevant to them. They were also fascinated by the mini-baseball that the souvenir store sold. They told me in England the security would classify them as weapons and arrest anyone that tried to bring one into a matc.

  58. Couldn’t find an edit button, but my last sentence makes little sense, unless I clarify that the mini baseball BATS were the “weapons” sold at Pac Bell Park.

  59. Craig, please explain why you eliminated the A’s out of hand! Maybe subconsciously you knew you were going to pick the Mariners? Anyway, fascinating stuff as always. I have mostly looked at your infographics to this point, so somehow it escaped me that you were neither American nor a lifelong baseball fan. But that makes your work even more awesome. Cheers.

    • I too was left desperately curious about the elimination of the A’s. Why???

      • I’m in a similar position, coming to baseball later in life, from a British background, and looking for a team. I think I’m going to settle on the A’s, so would love to know why you cut them without giving a reason. All the other cut teams had some sound reasoning behind them. Is there something I should know before I throw my energy behind the A’s?

  60. Pittsburgh is the best choice for any fan looking for a comeback team. I love the Pirates ever since I moved here, and cutting them was the wrong decision.

  61. As a lifelong Pirates fan, I’m happy to see them get so far on your list. Being a fan is an odd thing. It’s like an extension of our clan-ish nature as humans (i.e. this is my family, school, town, country, continent, hemisphere). But if you don’t take it too seriously, it can really enhance the fun of sports. Good reading and enjoy cheering for the Mariners!

  62. You’ll probably never read this, but here goes. First off, I loved this. The logic behind it was nothing short of brilliant.

    However, I have one criticism -

    The Mariners and the Pirates (semi-finalsts) are both partly-owned by ROOT Sports, a subsidiary of DirecTV, not Fox.

    There’s a third MLB team that also falls into this category: The Colorado Rockies.

    Which, by your own admission, is your favorite National League team.

    So while I like the Mariners pick, I feel that if they and the Pirates made it all the way, the Rockies should have been included in this.

    Plus, the Rockies need all the fans they can get right now.

    Thanks for listening!

  63. So I’ll make it three February replies to a November post, hoping that somehow this will attract your attention, Craig.

    I thoroughly enjoyed reading this. I like the Mariners for all the reasons you do, plus Edgar Martinez, Jamie Moyer, Dan Wilson, the young Ken Griffey, 2001, etc. And I have fervent hopes that another great group is growing right now around King Felix.

    I also root for the Tigers, but I admit this has less to do with the current team and everything to do with Ernie Harwell, Lou Whitaker, Alan Trammell, Kirk Gibson, Jack Morris, and Sparky Anderson, and the births of my older children in 1980 and 1984 in Garden City, Michigan. The current Tigers still have the most classic caps ever, with the old English D, and are somehow a success in America’s most downtrodden city.

    On the other hand, if I were starting from scratch, I’d be awfully tempted to pick the A’s or the Nationals. The Nats have the most interesting team in the majors right now, a nice home field (although not a Safeco, of course), and a bright future: all the marks of a well-run organization. (Also my 1-year-old grandson lives just across the Potomac from the their ballpark.) And the A’s have the best radio announcers anywhere along with an absolutely fascinating front office that leads the majors in finding new ways to collect nondescript players and turn them into winners.

    But I’d probably, in the end, nix the A’s for their hideous color scheme and their sad home field. Maybe I’d hold back from the Nationals for basing their prosperity on the wealth of a city whose economy is based entirely on the accumulation of political power. So I am content to be an M’s fan, and happy to welcome you to our ranks.

  64. Puh-leeze! This guy was a Yankee fan for a mere eight years, and he’s not even from NY. Let me read about a real fan going through the agony of choosing a new team.

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