It was one of the more disturbing and bizarre scenes one could imagine at a baseball stadium. In the moments following the Yankees 6-5 walk-off victory over the Cleveland Guardians, Yankees fans started throwing garbage onto the field in the direction of the Guardians outfielders.
Both teams sprinted into the outfield to assist the Guardians players who were drawing the ire of Yankees fans. Even Yankees broadcaster John Sterling called the fans who threw garbage onto the field as “Hooligans,” and not “Yankees fans.”
“Those aren’t Yankees fans! Hooligans!”— Jomboy Media (@JomboyMedia) April 23, 2022
Longtime radio broadcaster John Sterling was disgusted by what happened at Yankee Stadium today pic.twitter.com/16HzRzfZTL
This is disgusting. Yankees fans should be embarrassed. Wow.— Ben Verlander (@BenVerlander) April 23, 2022
Yankees walk it off then proceed to throw things at Guardians outfielders
Apparently the incident was precipitated earlier in the game after Isiah-Kiner Falefa tied the game on a double, Cleveland right fielder Oscar Mercado pointed at the stands and center fielder Myles Straw scaled the chain-link fence to confront a Yankees fan.
Yankees fans are throwing Pussy symbols up and the Guardians outfield wants all the smoke pic.twitter.com/188UJwK7If— Barstool Sports (@barstoolsports) April 23, 2022
Straw later told reporters after the game that Yankees fans are the “classless…worst fanbase on the planet.”
This is not the first time that Yankees fans have behaved badly in the Bronx. Just last season a fan was banned for life after throwing a baseball at Red Sox outfielder Alex Verdugo.
At Yankee Stadium since last April:— Max Goodman (@MaxTGoodman) April 23, 2022
- A fan hit Alex Verdugo with a baseball in left field
- Fans threw baseballs onto the field of play from all over during a Yankees-Rays game
- Today, beer cans and trash were thrown at Guardians outfielders after a walk-off win pic.twitter.com/wL9JtMhlrz
And it isn’t just baseball where we have seen an influx of troubling player-fan interactions. The NBA has been littered with it. One can point to the infamous Malice at the Palace in Detroit all those years ago when Indiana Pacers’ Ron Artest ran into the stands to pulverize a Detroit Pistons fan who he thought threw a bottle at him.
Just last year when the NBA allowed fans back into arenas there were reports of fans throwing garbage at players. And just last week, Nets star Kyrie Irving flipped the middle finger at Boston fans during Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals.
It is becoming disturbingly apparent that the lines between the players and fans are blurring. The behavior on display by Yankees fans was reprehensible, and one that will stain a once proud fan base. Those who tossed garbage in the direction of the Cleveland Guardians should, and likely will face banishment from the ballpark.