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Ranking the most likable and least likable teams

Sep 13, 2013, 12:30 PM EDT

Best Fans

Brisbee does it over at SB Nation, and it’s hard to quibble with the least likable part of his list. People love to hate the successful teams, the rich teams and especially the rich and successful teams. And I think he is right on the money when it comes to the general vibe of the fandom having an impact too. Check out his comment about the Cardinals alleged Best Fans in Baseball. Had me nodding.

I don’t know if the teams on the other end of the spectrum are best described as “most likable,” though. I think teams fall into three categories: (1) your team; (2) teams you hate; and (3) teams you rarely if ever think about. The Mariners never hit my radar screen and are probably the least offensive to me at all, but that doesn’t make me like them even a little bit.

Anyway, the list is still a good one. As long as everyone who reads it realizes and acknowledges that my rooting interests are superior to yours. And as long as you all feel the same way in turn.

  1. Old Gator - Sep 13, 2013 at 12:43 PM

    After Wednesday night, I agree fully with ranking the Barves number three. An outbreak of bush league pique masquerading as a Spenserian defense of the “unwreeten rules” to beat the band. And of course, the Bord-Beanbag twinster at the top of the list really belongs in a category of its own – like a binary star system.

    • Old Gator - Sep 13, 2013 at 12:43 PM

      Borg-Beanbag. But you knew that.

      • bigharold - Sep 13, 2013 at 1:12 PM

        OG, .. Forget the Feesh. Come over to the dark side, .. we have beer and nachos.

      • historiophiliac - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:08 PM

        OMG, he thinks you can be tempted by beer and nachos.

  2. maikoch - Sep 13, 2013 at 12:44 PM

    I don’t think that “most likable” is really stated or implied by the article. The list seems to present a spectrum of “most hated” to “provokes no feelings whatsoever”. In other words, teams are being ranked solely by the amount of hate they generate, from zero to Yankees.

  3. chiadam - Sep 13, 2013 at 12:45 PM

    Whoops..that Cards sign is incomplete..allow me.
    Baseball’s best fans…to model jorts.
    Baseball’s best city…to buy jorts in.
    Baseball’s best ballpark…to wear jorts in.

    • jcmeyer10 - Sep 13, 2013 at 12:52 PM

      If fashionis cyclical, they will come back and St. Louis will be at the fashion forefront. Until then though… jorts man, jorts.

      • chiadam - Sep 13, 2013 at 12:56 PM

        Perhaps. But how many cycles until we reach the St. Louis hat trick (jorts, combat boots, tucked-in jersey)?

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Sep 13, 2013 at 1:11 PM

        But how many cycles until we reach the St. Louis hat trick (jorts, combat boots, tucked-in jersey)?

        Oh holy dog please tell me this is a joke and people don’t wear this outfit?

      • spudchukar - Sep 13, 2013 at 1:15 PM

        When did this site become the blog of choice for the Fashion Police?

      • bigharold - Sep 13, 2013 at 1:17 PM

        “..they will come back and St. Louis will be at the fashion forefront. Until then though… jorts man, jorts.”

        Not likely!

        http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=jorts

      • spudchukar - Sep 13, 2013 at 1:28 PM

        If you are making fun of Jorts while wearing a coat and tie a close examination of your priorities is probably in order.

      • bigharold - Sep 13, 2013 at 3:12 PM

        ” .. while wearing a coat and tie ”

        I’m working from home today. I am most assuredly not wearing ” .. a coat and tie.. “.

      • jimeejohnson - Sep 15, 2013 at 12:27 PM

        Jorts: Jean shorts. Worn mostly by children and douchebags. Jorts are perhaps the easiest way to recognize people you will not like. If you wear jorts, you probably don’t talk to girls. The term “jorts” does not apply to jean shorts worn by black people, as those are entirely acceptable.

        The kid next to me was definitely a total dick; he was wearing jorts.

    • stlouis1baseball - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:11 PM

      Lol! Jorts? Seriously Chiadam? Phuqing Jorts? That is some funny stuff.
      You made me laugh out loud. And combat boots as well?
      Typically, Cubs fans try some lame ass insult about penny loafers and mustaches.
      You went a whole other direction. Hahaha! Jorts. Well done.

      • historiophiliac - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:26 PM

        Please don’t pretend like you don’t wear jorts. I know you do. smh

      • stlouis1baseball - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:27 PM

        I never said I don’t wear jorts.
        I am saying I have never noticed anyone at a Cardinals game wearing jorts and combat boots.
        Just jorts…just combat boots…or both. Lol!
        I really did/do appreciate his post. Cracked me up.

      • historiophiliac - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:38 PM

        You wear combat boots and your momma dresses you funny.

      • stlouis1baseball - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:41 PM

        Confession:
        I golfed in jort’s a few weeks ago. I didn’t have any khaki sorts clean and it was 95 gosh damned degree’s.

      • stlouis1baseball - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:43 PM

        Something I found funny while looking at Harry’s urban dictionary link. Black people can apparently wear jorts. But no one else.

      • stlouis1baseball - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:45 PM

        Harold’s link. NOT Harry’s. Sorry Big Harold. I feel terrible. I didn’t mean it Man!

  4. scoutsaysweitersisabust - Sep 13, 2013 at 12:46 PM

    It’s funny, the Red Sox weren’t hated until they started to win. With the winning came the cockiness, the swagger, the media coverage. Now they’re hated because of it. It’s the same with the Yankees. I think most teams that are hated, because people see the ridiculous amounts of coverage they get in the media, while [Insert Team Name here] gets ignored.

    I fully agree on the three categories. I mean, I am happy for Pirates fans this year, but it’d be a stretch I like them. I’m more indifferent with a subtle “Well, good for them, now back to my team’s news of the day….”

    • yahmule - Sep 13, 2013 at 1:22 PM

      I’m old enough to remember when Red Sox fans were considered “the best fans in baseball.” Which is funny because everybody now agrees they’re a bunch of whiny maggots.

      • clydeserra - Sep 13, 2013 at 4:07 PM

        I am not so sure on that.

        When i was a kid in the 70s (late would have been 77. 78, 79) We went to one game with the visiting Red Sox. The fans around us were so obnoxious my mother refused to go to any more sox games.

        In speaking with other people at the time, there seemed to be consensus that Red sox fans were the worst.

        Totally unscientific, anecdotal I know.

      • yahmule - Sep 13, 2013 at 9:23 PM

        Clyde, I think you’re right. They were actually called “the most knowledgeable fans in baseball.” They’ve never had a reputation for being particularly nice.

    • peymax1693 - Sep 13, 2013 at 1:25 PM

      As a Yankee fan living in Western Massachusetts, I am endlessly subjected to grief from Red Sox fans about how much the entire country hates my team. It’s good to see that the rest of the country apparently hates their team almost as much as mine.

      • yahmule - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:14 PM

        I think I hate the Red Sox just a bit more. The Yankee fans are assholes and they own it. Except for their bizarre campaign to try and paint George Steinbrenner as anything but a titanic asshole and blustering bully.

        Red Sox fans have a weird tendency to project their emotional attachment to their team onto completely unwilling bystanders.

      • paperlions - Sep 13, 2013 at 4:07 PM

        What yahmule said. Living in eastern CT, Boston fans are far worse than Yankee fans.

        Yankee fans don’t think their team is the best and has always been the best…they KNOW it. End of discussion. No matter who you root for, they aren’t as good, don’t have the history or Jeter…so, you lose….no argument necessary.

        In contrast, if you disagree with Red Sox fans, they will incessantly complain and whine about your lack of agreement with them about their team’s awesomeness (at least, when they are winning), and they will not shut up about it…they NEED you to agree with them. They are far far far more annoying than Yankee fans, which I never would have believed before moving here.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Sep 13, 2013 at 7:05 PM

        In contrast, if you disagree with Red Sox fans, they will incessantly complain and whine about your lack of agreement with them about their team’s awesomeness (at least, when they are winning), and they will not shut up about it…they NEED you to agree with them. They are far far far more annoying than Yankee fans, which I never would have believed before moving here.

        Not sure how long you lived in CT (I grew up there and moved out in ’06), but it was way more fun tormenting Sox fans pre-2004. Every year they’d give us Yankee fans crap because the Sox were always in first place. “This is our year, the Yankees suck!” blah blah blah. And every year, they’d collapse like a flan in the cupboard (Eddie Izzard). It got so comical because it would happen…every…single…year.

        Now they are just annoying. The prime example is Bill Simmons writing a post saying that if your team wins a championship, you should get a 5 year grace period from any criticism. Simmons proceeded to wait almost two months before bashing the Sox after the ’04 World Series win.

      • bruininnh1984 - Sep 18, 2013 at 8:03 PM

        yankee fans are to baseball as montreal fans are to hockey. both teams with a storied tradition of winning and the sense of entitlement among their fans to go along with it

    • dan1111 - Sep 13, 2013 at 1:45 PM

      Yeah. The main takeaway from this is that people hate teams that win. Nothing surprising about that.

      What would be really interesting is the hate-to-wins ratio. What teams are most hated after controlling for how successful they are?

      • scoutsaysweitersisabust - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:46 PM

        It’s not a direct hate to win formula. I certainly don’t hate the Giants, but that’s probably because they haven’t won long enough to irritate me the way the Redsox and Yankee fans do. They also don’t get the massive media love that the Yankees and Redsox get due to their smaller market. I mostly get irritated when the media spent all last year dismissing the Orioles and the amazing season they had as a fluke, while the Yankees and Redsox each get 25 mins of each hour dedicated to discussing story lines the media has to invent just so they can say Red Soz or Yankees as much as possible.

  5. spudchukar - Sep 13, 2013 at 12:46 PM

    What are you nodding at Craig? Calling St. Louis fans Goons?

    • stlouis1baseball - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:36 PM

      I don’t get the whole clap when an opposing player limped of the field thing.
      What’s the deal with that?

      • spudchukar - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:37 PM

        That was the point of my question. What is the limping thing about. When? Where? Who?

      • paperlions - Sep 13, 2013 at 4:12 PM

        Must have been referring to this….god damned goons!

        http://blogs.ajc.com/atlanta-braves-blog/2012/05/12/chipper-moved-by-ovation-from-cardinals-fans/

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Sep 13, 2013 at 7:06 PM

        I don’t get the whole clap when an opposing player limped of the field thing.

        Is this a specific reference to some incident, or the general thing the crowd does? If it’s the latter, it’s supposed to be a sign that everyone is glad the player isn’t seriously hurt. The former, I have no idea.

      • stlouis1baseball - Sep 13, 2013 at 7:08 PM

        I have no idea what the hell he is referring to. And no one else seems to either. I mean…they often cheer the other team’s players when they make a good play. To insinuate they are cheering an injury is ridiculous.

  6. yankeesfanlen - Sep 13, 2013 at 12:56 PM

    Universe Wins!!!THEEEEEEEEEEE Universe WINS!!!!!!

    • Utley's Hair - Sep 13, 2013 at 1:47 PM

      Damn ARod….

  7. amhendrick - Sep 13, 2013 at 1:07 PM

    “there’s no way to hate the Royals.”

    I don’t know, I’ve never liked the Royals. I think I became annoyed with them because of the disproportionately high number of talented baseball writers who are Royals fans. I’d get excited to see a new article up by Rob Neyer or Joe Poz, but it’s be all about the Royals.

    • geoknows - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:00 PM

      I can’t see that as a reason to dislike the Royals. Dislike the writer, if anything.

      • geoknows - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:03 PM

        It’s an interesting point, though. Those guys are all either actually from KC, or spent a large number of their formative writing years in KC. The question I usually hear is “why do so many good sportswriters root for the Royals?” but really, the question should be “why does Kansas City turn out so many good sportswriters?”

      • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Sep 13, 2013 at 4:54 PM

        Media coverage seems to be the main reason people hate the Yankees. Why shouldn’t it be the reason someone hates the Royals?

    • historiophiliac - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:11 PM

      I dislike the Royals. Stupid kryptonite.

    • sadtwinsfan - Sep 13, 2013 at 3:27 PM

      overall i like the royals, but i do hold it against them for reportedly not considering trading greinke to us in 2010 for our post season run, because they didn’t want to discomfit thier ever depressed fan base by trading within thier division.

  8. DelawarePhilliesFan - Sep 13, 2013 at 1:09 PM

    The Cardinals fan thing – while humorous – does raise a good point. Why does polite clapping make you good fans, and boo-ing make you bad? Seriously. I would argue the counter – the passionate fans get carried away, live or die by every pitch,and as such, get carried to extremes they may not have done in a more rational state of mind. “Please get a hit, please get a hit, please get a hit”…. (strike 3)….”BOOOOOO!!!” That is a sign of passion, not being a bad fan

    • spudchukar - Sep 13, 2013 at 1:14 PM

      This just in. You can be passionate and polite, too.

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Sep 13, 2013 at 1:52 PM

        I never said one could not be both – and you are not addressing what I said at all. Passion in the form of expressing outrage at a poor performance is touted as proof positive that a fan base is bad

      • dan1111 - Sep 14, 2013 at 3:09 AM

        Booing your own player because he struck out is mean-spirited and classless. Good fans support their team’s players, not turn against them every time an at-bat or play doesn’t work out.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Sep 13, 2013 at 1:17 PM

      “Please get a hit, please get a hit, please get a hit”…. (strike 3)….”BOOOOOO!!!” That is a sign of passion, not being a bad fan

      Although, I wouldn’t argue it makes you a good fan either.

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Sep 13, 2013 at 1:55 PM

        What would you argue?

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:03 PM

        Personally, knowledge of the game, commitment to a team through good years and bad, how much you actually follow the team, etc are far more important than how you react to a win or a loss.

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:17 PM

        So in other words – an argument that has nothing to do with what I said

      • spudchukar - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:35 PM

        It may not have been what you meant, but it was what you wrote.

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Sep 13, 2013 at 5:56 PM

        @spud – no, I wrote what I wrote. You taking it a deifferent direction is on you

    • clydeserra - Sep 13, 2013 at 4:11 PM

      that’s what I don’t get.

      The best fans? the people that show up to Royals and Pirates games before this year. To a certain extent Oakland and Tampa.

      its not hard to go to a game in a downtown area that is easy to get to with a winning team. Showing up for a mid weekday A’s Royals game, there is you “Best fan in baseball”

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Sep 13, 2013 at 4:30 PM

        I agree. Its easy to love a winner, but Royals, Pirates, etc. fans show what it really means to be a fan

      • kcjedi5 - Sep 13, 2013 at 4:37 PM

        Thank you.

      • APBA Guy - Sep 13, 2013 at 6:24 PM

        Yep, I can remember going to A’s games around 2008/9 with 8,000 of my brethren, and it seemed like all of them knew the players, were into the game, and knew the team’s history. Moreover, those fans had great attitude: sure, the team sucked, but they tried, and a day at the park was better than a day at the office-anytime!

  9. TheMorningStar - Sep 13, 2013 at 1:41 PM

    The list should begin and end with one team only…the NY Yankees.

  10. Utley's Hair - Sep 13, 2013 at 1:52 PM

    Reds need to be higher. After all, purdueman is a Reds fan.

  11. thomas844 - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:00 PM

    As a Reds fan, I have this to say:

    The Cardinals organization is amazing. They consistently have great teams, likable players, a great history, and a loyal fanbase. In my opinion though, what keeps them from being the most likeable is their fans constantly flaunting the “We’re the Best Fans in Baseball!” thing.

    Nobody likes self-righteousness, and many of the fans act like they never boo their own players when in fact, they do (2011 World Series, I recall hearing loud boos towards David Freese for missing a pop fly before he engaged in his Game 6 heroics). My main point is, every team has great fans and bad fans, and every fanbase at some point boos their own players if they play badly or miss an easy play. I agree that the Cardinal organization is indeed very lovable, but some of their fans need to stop acting like they are superior to everyone else. They are baseball fans, just like there are in every other organization.

    • stlouis1baseball - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:35 PM

      I despise the best fans in baseball bullshit. I don’t know where it came from. I don’t know when it started. I just know I despise it. Come to think of it…I first heard it from announcers covering Cardinals games. National announcers. But I don’t care. It’s bullshit.

      • kcjedi5 - Sep 13, 2013 at 3:13 PM

        The whole “best fans in baseball” thing is bullshit. cardinal fans are the The Worst in baseball. They will come in to your team’s park and pour beer on kids, push kids out of the way just to get their little cardinal hat on the video screen inbetween innings. They think are so great because they wear red to the games.

      • mazblast - Sep 15, 2013 at 1:29 PM

        As a non-Reds fan who has lived most of his life in Cincinnati, I hear the fans of the local team described as “the best fans in baseball” all the time, including by themselves.

        It is a joke. They are in fact amazingly unknowing about the game itself, ignorant of the rules, uneducated about opposing players, and rude, surly, and abusive towards fans of the opponent.

        I’m the kind of fan who roots for his team quietly, a “you do your thing, I’ll do mine, and at the end of the day, I hope it’s a good game and we both have a good time” guy, yet if I show any regard for my team, I get showered with verbal and even physical abuse by these ignoramuses. A lot of warm, stale alleged beer has been dumped on me for having the gall, the nerve, the unmitigated audacity to root for the visiting team. It’s not as bad as in the 1970s, when the USHERS would threaten me with expulsion from the park for the crime of rooting for my team, but it still stinks to pay for a ticket and have the home team fans get hostile for not sharing in the groupthink.

        As for St. Louis–great fans, great organization, great team. Know their stuff, at least about baseball (other sports, uh, no). I wish that my team (which you’ll notice I have not identified) was as good historically. St. Louis’ worst crime is giving the world Budweiser and Bud Light, both sad excuses for beer.

    • forsch31 - Sep 14, 2013 at 1:01 AM

      The whole Best Fans in Baseball thing started years ago because of opposing team media reports like this recent one: http://www.denverpost.com/ci_21219530/cardinals-fans-get-another-vote-best-baseball. Basically, mad passionate fans combined with Midwestern politeness. It floated around for a decade or two, but then the Internet came along and ruined it for everyone.

      The “Best Fans” garbage got picked up, got parroted around, and some of the idiotic elements of the St. Louis fanbase took it seriously and tended to brag about it. Of course, idiots in other fanbases listened, took it seriously, and tended to scream bloody murder. Thus, we have a monthly debate/ridicule session/Craig trolling.

      If you haven’t guessed it by now, the whole thing is pretty idiotic. Because 1…it means absolutely nothing. Fans don’t play the game on the field, so why does anybody care which fanbase is the best, or worst for that matter? Because 2…the minute you claim to be the best fans, you just disproved that notion. So, please shut up about it and go watch the game.

      Also, I love that Craig posted a picture from 2006. Because it’s so timely…just like this whole story.

  12. bravojawja - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:01 PM

    Goddammit! We lost to the Yankees again! This shit’s gettin’ old.

  13. NatsLady - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:29 PM

    Surprised the Nats didn’t rank higher, given all the Rizzo hate, Nats are “arrogant” stuff on a site like this. All he could say was the Nats aren’t liked because there should be a team in Montreal? Well, there should, but there should be a team in Our Nation’s Capital, too. I think he just ran out of steam after about the top five or ten.

    • yahmule - Sep 13, 2013 at 2:52 PM

      They would have placed higher this time last year because of the national Straburg angst.

  14. aceshigh11 - Sep 13, 2013 at 3:03 PM

    It’s easy to hate the Red Sox because of the FANS, but I dunno…this team, THIS year, is easily the most likeable Sox team since the Cowboy Up/Idiot teams of ’03 and ’04.

  15. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Sep 13, 2013 at 4:59 PM

    Wait just a minute here…while I am sure the Yankees have the highest gross number of haters out there, I am sure the overall net sentiment would be positive (fans-minus-haters-equals-more fans).

    Now you look at a team like the Marlins…Even if you could get both Marlins fans in the same room they couldn’t compete with the dozens of Loria haters out there

    • yahmule - Sep 13, 2013 at 9:31 PM

      The Yankees do not come out in the black in that equation. Not even close.

      • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Sep 14, 2013 at 8:29 PM

        That’s not what it sounds like when they visit other parks.

  16. Jack Marshall - Sep 13, 2013 at 5:03 PM

    Benitez a more dislikable Oriole than Albert Belle? Ridiculous.

    Albert Belle must be one of the 10 most objectively dislikable MLB players of all time, right up there with Cap Anson, Hal Chase, Ty Cobb, Alex Johnson, John Rocker, ARod and Barry Bonds.

    Now there’s a list to work on. (I bet somebody’s already done it.) Who else? Does Clemens make the list? Steve Carlton? Jeff Kent?

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Sep 13, 2013 at 7:11 PM

      Yes, Benitez was worse than Albert Belle:

    • yahmule - Sep 13, 2013 at 9:39 PM

      Deserves its own thread. There are countless guys to consider for such a list: Leo Durocher, AJ Pierzynski, Billy Martin, Curt Schilling, Carl Everett, Jose Canseco, Dave Kingman, Milton freaking Bradley, Rob Dibble, Nyjer Morgan, Sal Maglie, Stan Williams, Gary Sheffield, so many more.

      • mazblast - Sep 15, 2013 at 1:37 PM

        Some of those guys are the “even his own teammates hate him” type, some the “you hate him until you’re on his team, then you love him” type. Pierzynski and Martin are from the latter group, Kingman, Bradley, Morgan stand out as being in the former.

        “Sal the Barber” Maglie was one of my late father’s favorites with his beloved NY Giants. He was definitely from the “He’s an a-hole, but he’s OUR a-hole, and every team would love to have him” crowd.

        Dibble–Back in their fluke 1990 season, one of my friends worked for the Reds, and a player told her, “I wish he wasn’t having such a good year, because half the clubhouse would like to deck that &%$#@.”

  17. stlouis1baseball - Sep 13, 2013 at 6:53 PM

    “They will come in to your team’s park and pour beer on kids, push kids out of the way just to get their little cardinal hat on the video screen inbetween innings. They think are so great because they wear red to the games.”

    Wow.

    kcjedi5:
    When you make shit up. And I mean completely fabricate things you lose what little credibility you ever had. You need to try harder cause’ your post is laughable.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Sep 13, 2013 at 7:12 PM

      I think he’s thinking about that other team that wears red, has tons of phan related issues, and is hundreds of miles to the east.

  18. perryt200 - Sep 14, 2013 at 2:42 AM

    Wanna be successful and not be hated?

    Win the World Series and come in last in your division the next year. really simple formula.

    The Cardinals don’t do that. Every year come September , the dog is in the fight.

    Without flash, without national headlines, without controversy, but the best farm system in baseball.

    That is the success that makes them hated. And it is the stuff that makes me giggle every year.

    • mazblast - Sep 15, 2013 at 1:40 PM

      Not every year. Remember the Seventies and Nineties.

      That said, the Cards are almost always among the teams in contention. Not my team, not by a long shot, but overall successful and admirable in how they go about their business.

      If my team doesn’t win it, I never have a problem with seeing the Cardinals hoist the trophy.

  19. realgone2 - Sep 14, 2013 at 11:26 AM

    What a stupid list. Basically teams that have mostly lost for years are loveable and teams that have won the majority of the last decade or 2 are hated? Pretty one dimensional.

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