Why do the Yankees and Mets fans dislike the other team? How about the Cubs and the White Sox; why do the loyal fans of those franchises detest “that other team” from the north or south? And why does one have to choose between the Giants or the J-E-T-S?
Now I obviously know the answer to these questions. The fact that these pairs of teams are in the same cities causes a territory conflict. The Giants and Jets share the same stadium. The Cubs occupy the north side of Chi-town and the Sox belong to the south. And the Mets/ Yankees are just a 4 Lexington Avenue Express ride away. Although I know the geographical location of teams can lead to rivalries, other factors give reasons as to why these particular teams and their fans have no reason to dislike the other.
Since we are talking about franchises, we should take the conferences and divisions they belong to rather than the city. The Cubs are in the National League Central and the Sox in the AL Central. They only play six times in a 162 game season. They only play those six games a season because interleague play was developed in 1997. Before 1997, they only played each other in exhibition games besides the 1906 World Series. These two teams hardly have an extensive history between one another to fuel a rivalry. The same can be said for the Yankees and Mets series. They only meet about six times a year since 1997 and have only met once in a World Series in 2000.
The Jets and Giants play in different conferences, meet once every four years, and have never met in a Super Bowl. Another weak history that doesn’t help contribute to a rivalry. Yet fans are often forced to choose between one or the other. These so-called rivalries are weak and the teams that are a part of them have had very limited effect on the other’s success.
Although this may sound like Barney and Friends, why can’t the residents of these cities like both teams? The limited amount of games between these teams during the regular season means that there are little times of controversy. Then by the off chance that the two teams meet in the championship of their league, the fan could be happy with the result either way. Wouldn’t that just be great!?!?!