Misbehaving fans of both New York teams have been in the news lately. I think the level of activity reflects on the teams themselves.
All information included here comes from Associated Press articles posted on news Web sites. Let’s review.
Bad Mets fan: Frank Martinez of the Bronx
Misbehavior: Shining a powerful flashlight into the faces of two Braves players during a game at Shea.
Bad Yankees fan: Mohammed Junaid Babar, formerly of Queens, now a London resident.
Misbehavior: Ran training camps in Pakistan for Islamic militants and nurtured a generation of homegrown British terrorists.
Oh my. Where to begin.
OK, first of all, I’m not branding Babar a Yankee fan. Apparently he confessed. AP describes him as "The slightly built Yankees fan." AP tends not to identify team affiliation, so this guy must have been one of those over-the-top Yankee freaks ticked off that his court appearance conflicted with his daily dose of "Mike and the Mad Dog."
Apparently when he wasn’t running about espousing Derek F. Jeter’s "intangibles" and booing Arod, Babar testified in a British court that he filled his days by getting involved with plots to assassinate Pakistan’s president.
While AP doesn’t mention the obligatory shrine to Paul O’Neill found in the house of every Yankee family, it does indicate that a "kitchen spice rack was packed with jars of chemicals, and aluminum powder and fertilizer for making bombs were stuffed in a bedroom cupboard. The backyard was a makeshift firing range, Babar testified. Buried close by was a cache of AK-47 rifles, grenades and ammunition. Plus, a Jason Giambi bobble head."
OK, I made up the part about the bobble head, but you just know he has one.
Look, I get it. You hang with the Yankees long enough and it’s going to mess with your mind. You start out thinking you are entitled to all the best free agents, then you think the World Series could be canceled if the Yanks aren’t involved "Because who is going to give a damn unless da Bombers are there?"
Next thing you know you’re joining Mike Francessa in a tirade because some Shea sound tech plays "Enter Sandman" when Billy Wagner walks out of the bullpen, a song that despite being written and performed by Metallica is apparently owned by Yankees closer/cyborg Mariano "Slayed by Scutaro" Rivera.
Clearly, the logical next step is to allegedly turn your house into a camp for militant extremists. Like I said, I get it.
Then we have our mischievous Mr. Martinez. who this week was sentenced to 15 days in the pokey and banned from Mets home games for the next three years.
Martinez was apparently distraught that the Mets were down 7-0 to the Braves on April 20, and thought he might stop the bleeding and allow our boys to catch up.
I see him working.
The difference is that most of us would have let loose with a "Chippppppeeerrrrrr! You suuuuucccckkkk" to lower the self-esteem of the Met-killing third-baseman, then head back to the concession stand for a lukewarm knish and a Diet Pepsi in a cool souvenir cup, confident that D-Wright and Jose will take care of business while Chipper is wallowing in the realization that he does indeed suck.
Our man Frank, however, lost faith in our assorted Carloses and opted to waste perfectly good seats behind home plate to shine his beam into the eyes of Braves pitcher Tim Hudson and shortstop Edgar Renter. He no doubt shined the light in Chipper’s eyes, too, but he couldn’t see it through his tears of shame.
Frank. Dude. I believe the rally cry is "You Gotta Believe" and not "You gotta blind the Braves." Let Willie and the guys take care of business. They don't need your help.
Still, a guess I prefer a guy who is a wee bit overzealous to a guy who apparently takes the name "Bronx Bombers" literally.