Say what you will about Steinbrenner, one thing is for sure, virtually no one has had as much of an impact on the game of baseball and how it has been played over the past 30 years than The Boss.
I never understood people’s accusations that Steinbrenner “bought” the best teams. Isn’t that what a baseball club is supposed to do? MLB has revenue sharing for a reason, to help level the playing field for smaller market clubs. The Yankees pay out more into that pot than any other team in the league.
While other owners run their teams as a business with a bottom line, Steinbrenner only cared about winning, no matter what the cost. He invested everything he made from the Yankees back into the Yankees and in the process, built an empire.
One thing I am always fascinated about is how fragile history is. How seemingly insignificant moments wind up having such profound effects on the course of history. A year before buying the Yankees Steinbrenner had unsuccessfully tried to buy the Cleveland Indians. It’s impossible to imagine what the landscape of baseball would like had he succeeded. The Yankees very well could have continued to wallow in the basement of the American League.
Luckily, for us Yankees fans, that’s something that we don’t have to imagine. Thanks for all of the great memories Mr. Steinbrenner, your presence will be missed.