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Awryvalry

Do fans need to be concerned a bit about the future of this
extreme rivalry? Given the state of the baseball world and
the passionate fervor focused on these two teams, it does
not take much to speculate on how fast the entire situation
can get out of hand.


So, if Red Sox Nation is really a place and actually exists as its
citizens regularly proclaim, can it be invaded? Regime change implemented? Or - at the least can some form of preemptive
strike be launched against it soon?


Please read on to see a possible future filled with Fandamonium
taken to an extreme.


It began as many other events that define history, with an innocuous event few seemed to notice and even less seemed to care about.

There was nothing simple about the Yankee and Red Sox rivalry, yet most people tried to maintain a sense of humor and balance between their baseball allegiance and the real world. Almost all of Red Sox nation laughed and condoned the ordinance proposed by the Damonville, Connecticut Town Board when it sought to ban the New York Yankees interlocking NY logo as, "An offensive display designed to provoke public ire and unrest; a symbol designed to instigate and agitate rather than illustrate freedom of expression and choice."

Among other provisions, the new ordinance, "Forbids the bodily display anywhere upon the person," of the interlocking NY with particular emphasis upon the "cranial region."

Geographically, politically and sports franchise loyalty-wise, Damonville , was always closer to Boston than New York . Sandwiched between the towns of Boyd and Shiraldi, Connecticut - just east of the approximate geographic center of the state - it was securely ensconced in Red Sox Nation. The Town Board passed the ordinance unanimously.

Boone, a small town in New York State, in Westchester County and right on the Connecticut border, declares a ban on the Boston "B" and called for a boycott of all things Connecticut until what they called "Freedom of Team" has been restored to oppressed Yankee fans in New England.

Yankee fans from Connecticut stream into Damonville to test the enforcement resolve of the local ten person police department. As arrests mount and the Damonville jail begins to strain with the mandatory sentence of one night in a cell with a Red Sox cap meted out hourly, the Connecticut State Police answered Damonville's call for help like a late inning reliever rushing in to quell an oppositional uprising. Unlike a Rivera or Paplebon, the Connecticut State Police could not close the deal and keep defiant Yankee fans out of Damonville. The State Police implement the "Yankee Fan Express" as buses run round trip from Damonville to the Fisk Correctional Facility in Burleson, Connecticut to temporarily incarcerate Yankee fans descending on Damonville from all over Connecticut, New York State, and New Jersey.

I-95 becomes clogged with Yankee fan caravans and convoys bound for Damonville to "Earn their pinstripes" by spending a night in the slammer for wearing NY caps, shirts and jackets. Some fans go so far as to have NY tattoos emblazoned on their bodies in various discreet and not so discreet places.

The inevitable Red Sox Nation backlash begins to manifest at rest stops along I-95. Groups of "Nation Builders" begin to harass, sabotage and brawl with Yankee fans at stops stretching the entire length of the interstate.

With the town of Damonville under siege, rioting along I-95, and the State Police overwhelmed and cracking under the strain, Connecticut takes the unprecedented action of closing its border with New York State and subjecting all vehicles seeking entrance to mandatory contraband searches for NY gear.

While the state of Connecticut never officially banned any Yankee gear, it pledges to honor the "Intent, spirit and moral obligation" of a law duly passed within its borders by local officials. Yankee fans do not help matters by declaring at every border crossing that they are headed directly for Damonville.

New York State, outraged at the traffic backing up along its highways and the general disruption caused by the closings, responds by closing the border leading into New York except for returning Yankee fans.

Connecticut's eastern and northern borders with Massachusetts remain wide open as Red Sox fans swarm into Connecticut and are quickly deputized by Damonville to help manage the overcrowded prisons and patrol the border crossing where recently released Yankee fans are "deported" back to New York State.

Enraged at the persecution inflicted upon Yankee fans - and by logical extension, New Yorkers - New York State bans all Connecticut products and enacts tariffs and commerce regulations on Connecticut products entering New York via New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Vermont.

All of New England unites behind the Red Sox and against the Yankees and New York . New England 's animosity extends to upstate New Yorkers, many of whom are Red Sox fans and thus alienates these potential Fifth Columnists. This ultimately proves a miscalculation by New England as upstate New Yorkers with no love for the Yankees are forced to either sit the conflict out on the bench or pledge support to their home state, if not necessarily the Yankees.

The closed borders and restricted travel force non-combatants to reroute traffic and travel through Canada or the Atlantic Ocean.

In New York City , the Steinbrenner famliy buys the City of New York City and becomes the controlling partner of the entire State of New York when they purchase the legislature and executive branches of state government. The terms of the deal place all the resources of the city (including police, mass transit and all city agencies) at the disposal of the Yankees. The Steinbrenners retains operational control of the team in all baseball matters and appoint a crack committee to manage New York City's affairs. Former Yankee star Yogi Berra is appointed governor of the state.

New York City decides to rename its major streets and avenues after current and retired heroes. New England responds by refusing to use the new naming convention on all correspondence and deliveries to New York effectively shutting down all post and parcel traffic from New England to New York. Large sections of the United States Postal Service and numerous private carriers such as FedEx and UPS are paralyzed.

Boston decides to adopt a similar street naming system, but having considerably less well known players than the Yankees their plan has only minimal impact. New Yorkers sending mail to Boston could apparently care less that Boylston Street has been renamed El Tiante
Way. Non Yankee fan New Yorkers thought Boylston Street sounded like something needing to be lanced and El Tiante Way sounds like a Latin jazz combo and actually prefer it to Boylston Street

On the legal front, New York City lawyers infiltrate all New England capitals and file discrimination lawsuits against local businesses and individuals identified in the press as "notoriously anti-Yankee, which, by extension makes them anti-New York "

The New York lawyers know their suits stand no chance of success and flee immediately after filing. The wording and legalese are crafted for maximum insult and offense to the Red Sox and their fans. The suits allege New England municipalities are motivated by jealousy, envy and inferiority to all things Yankee and New York, emphasizing the disparity in World Championships "eternally in the favor of New York."

The FAA is infuriated when Boston's Logan Airport (and all New England airports follow suit shortly thereafter) cancel all flights to New York. The Steinbrenners respond by not only vowing to keep the recently renamed metropolitan airports open (Joe DiMaggio Field - the former LaGuardia Airport), Cerone International Airport (the former Newark Airport) and Derek Jeter International Airport (the former JFK)) but offers to pay the airfare for any Sox fan wishing to return "home." The clever ploy works when thousands of potential "scouts" in New York return to New England resulting in severely diminished intelligence gathering against the Yankees "behind the lines."

In a move more political than financial, but a surprise to no one, the Steinbrenners buys Major League Baseball and fire commissioner Bud Selig, replacing him with Yankee radio broadcaster John Sterling. According to the Steinbrenners, "At least Sterling sounds like an authoritative commissioner when he speaks, unlike Selig, who sounds like a used car dealer selling lemons."

Sterling appoints Yankee fan Rudy Giuliani General Manager and the first order of business is to revamp ownership and roster rules to allow sweeping changes.

The last straw for New England comes when the freshly christened "New Yankee City " (the former New York City, but still NYC) financed by the Steinbrenners, mails every person in New England a Yankee team photograph - suitable for framing. New Englanders instantly organize redemption centers to collect the team photos and recycle them into toilet paper.

Millions of New Yorkers declare their neutrality until the Steinbrenners buy the Mets. Citi Field is renamed Bobby Mercer Field as the Met players, employees, and minor league system are absorbed into the Yankee organization. Former Met fans announce formation of the Free Met Resistance to combat the Yankee menace, but the Red Sox Nation badly misplays an opportunity to distract and possibly weaken the Yankees when they offend and alienate the FMR by expressing their lingering animosity and disdain for the Mets, stemming from 1986 L'Affair Buckner.

After initially disbanding the Mets, the Yankees unveil a crafty strategy by forming two New York teams: the Pinstripes (who in actuality are the Yankees) and the Grays (who are the reconstituted and re-uniformed Mets) so the team has both home and road teams playing simultaneously in the Bronx and on the road under the new slogan, "The Game Never Ends For Yankee Fans."

Former Met fans flock to the Yankee Grays when all ex-Mets are used to populate the team.

Massachusetts now decides to pursue a policy of "regionalizing" baseball and seizes control of the Red Sox by exercising "intellectual eminent domain" over the sports team. The fact that the team is partially owned by the New York Times did much to stifle opposition to the legality, ethics and morality of the maneuver when the Times is compensated at fair market value for the seizure of the team.

Boston, always the de facto capital of New England, formalizes this position when Vermont, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Maine and Connecticut all approve state resolutions empowering Boston to act on their behalf in all Yankee and Red Sox rivalry related matters by officially establishing RSN: Red Sox Nation, an official and legal entity. Their charter states their position clearly:"We are neither a Red State nor a Blue State: we are Red Sox Nation."

New England businesses and professions severely impacted by the consequences of the rivalry join the Red Sox Nation sponsored Greater Boston Co-Prosperity Sphere and receive government subsidies for their ailing businesses in exchange for selling, stocking and otherwise proffering goods and services sustaining Red Sox Nation (essentially, Sox hats and t-shirts).

The first blatant anti-New York measure surfaces when Yankee logos and visual representations of the team are "banned in Boston," which now covers all of New England based on the tenets of the Co-Prosperity Sphere.

When RSN citizens complain scattered NY Met hats observed within the Nation are an affront and noted, "Even though it's not 'that' NY, it's an 'NY' and it is offensive." Reaching back into their puritanical past, they declare the Nation has only one true baseball team and followers, rooters and loyalists to other organizations are no longer welcome. While they are at it, the RSN decides that there is only one true team in each major sport: the Bruins, Celtics and Patriots only require foils to display their inherent superiority against.

RSN enacts bans similar to their Yankee prohibition on all things NY and public or private display and ownership of any items bearing the distinctive logos of the Mets, Knicks and Rangers. The Jets and Giants are included for their refusal to disassociate from the city, which New England points out has been renamed New Yankee City, and logically decides that since the "Y" in non Yankees gear containing any NY does in fact abbreviate the name Yankees, it can be banned. The RSN decides to ignore soccer, declaring it an unnecessary sport.

While many New Englanders and Sox fans return home courtesy of the Yankees, thousands remain behind in a tense environment. Tension increases when New Yankee City owners the Steinbrenners call for a similar ban on "B" adorned garb in the city and state of New York; however, the local chapter of the ACLU rallies non-Yankee fan New Yorkers and New Jerseyites to allow reasonable display of "B" garb on the basis of personal expression and illustrative of freedom of choice. In a shrewd and ultimately farsighted move, the Yankees validate the ACLU recommendation with the Red Sox Fan Protection Act and establish safe zones and protected enclaves within NYC, with the first such shelter launching at 7th Avenue South and West 4th Street in Manhattan. Red Sox fans in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, The Bronx, or Staten Island must register with their local BOONE: Borough Office Of New England

In retaliation, RSN forces transplanted New Yorkers, Yankee fans, and eventually all non Red Sox supporting sports fans within New England to register with the Ministry of Fandom in Pawtucket and report their whereabouts at all times. Boston establishes the first official national holiday for Red Sox Nation by designating October 21st RSN Independence Day and declaring Boston an YFZ: Yankee Free Zone.

After the Steinbrenners acquire the rights - but not direct ownership - of New Jersey, they fire the governor for declaring neutrality in the rivalry. The former governor cities southern New Jerseys resident's fondness for both the Phillies and Orioles, infuriating Steinbrenner. The governor is replaced by Yankees General Manager Brian Cashman. With a Yankee employee ruling the state, New Jersey throws its support firmly behind the Bronx A hard hitting ban on Philadelphia Phillie and Baltimore Oriole items is enacted in South Jersey. Much to the baseball world's surprise, the ACLU supports the ban; much to no one's surprise it is subsequently revealed the ACLU has been purchased by the Yankees.

With a significant portion of the budgets from two states and "The Greatest City in the World" allocated for player acquisition and development, the Yankees continue to stock up on reserve players by purchasing the Arizona Diamondbacks, Anaheim Angels and Florida Marlins. The mystique and aura of limitless Yankee capital is enhanced when the Yankees ink a deal with the Ford Motor Company to sponsor "player transport", thousands of white ford trucks detailed with pinstripes.

RSN, facing a shortage of funds In New England, expels all registered Yankee fans and seizes all property and assets for liquidation. All funds raised are designated for free agent acquisition. Due to the travel bans and border closings, Boston braces for the financial strain of supporting thousands of college students who can no longer emigrate to New York to secure lucrative employment upon graduation.

Spring training begins as Red Sox Nation, alarmed by the strategic preseason moves executed by the Yankees (buying both New Jersey and the ACLU as well as annexing New York State), reconvene to sign the Nantucket Pact; a defense agreement whereby all professional and minor league teams within the nation are absorbed into the newly expanded Red Sox roster.

Another provision of the Nantucket Pact calls for the Red Sox to expand their roster a second time when it adds tens of thousands of players to the roster by calling up the combined New England National Guard to the major leagues. In a move that can only be interpreted as utter brilliance designed to successfully intimidate the Yankees or the greatest Red Sox miscalculation ever, RSN orders only road uniforms for its players, stating that, "The Nation is on the move and we will all be spending a lot of time in New Yankee City."

The only logical Yankee reaction is to form YATO: Yankee Alliance Treaty Organization and expand their own roster to one hundred thousand players by promoting the entire National Guard and State Police of both New York and New Jersey as well as the NYPD.

RSN defends its initial provocation of mobilization as defensive in nature in spite of the road only uniforms, and cites YATO, the Yankees' purchase, acquisition and annexation strategy as inherently threatening and the Nantucket Pact as a voluntary coalition arrayed against the imperialistic Evil Empire of the New Yorkers.

As spring training winds down, the Red Sox announce they are sending twenty thousand players to western Connecticut to help local law enforcement deal with what the Boston Globe refers to as "Fifth Basemen," loyal Yankee fans engaged in civil (and in many cases decidedly uncivil) disobedience.

YATO warns the Nantucket Pact that it cannot tolerate any increased oppression of Yankee fans within New England and the presence of so many Red Sox players so close to the Bronx; if the RSN moves any players into eastern Connecticut , YATO will be forced to "Throw out the fist pitch."

Baseball season opens when the Yankees send fifty thousand players across New England's borders in four columns with an additional column of "Fifth Basemen" rising in western Connecticut. Yankees players cross into Vermont just west of Bennington and continually advance the runners along towards New Hampshire while players bunt their way into Massachusetts along the Mass Pike near West Stockbridge and into Connecticut along I-95 and I-84.

Taking advantage of the confusion in western Connecticut , the Yankees execute as classic hit and run as they dash along the interstates all the way to Hartford. In shockingly quick time, the Pinstripes fly over the Connecticut capital.

The Yankees in Connecticut take the extra base and surge north from Hartford while up in Vermont, they hit the cutoff man and move south at Brattleboro to link up in Springfield, Massachusetts.

The Red Sox spend far too much time warming up in the bullpen and are clearly in second place as the Yankees pause to regroup. RSN eventually sends swarms of players west to meet the Yankees; however, the early inning Yankee lightening assures the field of play rests deep in New England, thus rendering the Red Sox Nation's road uniforms an embarrassment.

Double plays, sacrifices, squeeze plays, stolen bases, extra bases, and plays at the plate unfold all over New England as hits, homers and line drives find the gaps between Brattleboro up in Vermont and New Haven down in Connecticut.

A contingent of ex-players who donned both the pinstripes and Sox red establish a committee to broker a 7th inning stretch. The plan backfires miserably when the site of committee chairman Roger Clemmens infuriates both the Yankees and Red Sox who resume their contest with recharged animosity.

Move and countermove play out all over the field, the Yankees pinch-hit and the Sox change pitchers. The Sox attempt to steal and the Yanks call for a pitch out.

At the end of nine innings, the score stands even and the Yankees and Red Sox grind each other down into extra innings straight through the fall.

The fighting pauses for a brief moment when news reaches the rivals that the Baltimore Orioles defeated the Atlanta Braves in the Most of the Rest of the World Series in October.

With the help of the Boston Ducks, an assemblage of vintage military amphibious transports used to ferry troops redeployed as tour vehicles, the Red Sox shuttle players to land behind the Yankees all along the Connecticut coast. With the influx of fresh players, the Red Sox rally and begin to push the Yankees out of first place across the entire playing field, from New Haven to Springfield.

Capitalizing on their father's shipbuilding connections and business history, the Steinbrenners commission the Great Pinstriped Fleet - a flotilla of water taxis previously used to shuttle fans to and from Yankee Stadium via the Hudson and East rivers - and set sail for New England with a full Relief Corps. The Great Pinstriped Fleet is rebuffed only several miles into Long Island Sound when the RSN enlists Old Ironsides to stop the New Yorkers. The ancient warship was refurbished in the Charleston Naval Yard and lobs volley after volley of fastballs into the Pinstriped Fleet, sending it reeling back all the way through Hell Gate and back to the Bronx.

The Steinbrenners respond by reactivating the USS Intrepid, a decommissioned aircraft carrier transformed into a floating museum on Manhattan's Westside. The reactivation includes the full compliment of aircraft which are subsequently used to carpet beanball Red Sox players and Boston Ducks ferrying relievers across Long Island Sound. Old Ironsides guards the entrance to the Sound but the air strikes convince the RSN to abandon the Ducks, leaving whatever players not on the DL in Connecticut to carry on the fight.

The Sox, having ferried sufficient backup players along Long Island Sound before suspending operations, begin to turn the tide against the Yankees. New Yorkers are thrown out at the plate, caught stealing, picked off and rallies snuffed as the Sox turn double plays and the Yankees are caught looking at called third strikes.

It is at this point, when Yankee fortunes have taken a turn for the worse that the New Yorkers choose to unveil their secret weapon, their version of the Death Star: the MO42 Communications Satellites used by the YES Network. Each contains a hidden Rally Killer Ray. The satellites zap Fenway Park and portions of the Cask & Flagon in an initial strike. They are reluctant to zap the Red Sox players so close to the Yankees and instead concentrate on equipment manufacture and supply lines.

Suddenly faced with crucial shortages of bats, balls, gloves and the Fenway Franks used to feed the players, General Manager Theo Epstein hatches a brilliant scheme: he redirects the orbits of the New England Sports Network's satellites (the infamous PAPI2004) into collision courses with the YES networks MO42 satellites. The Yankee and Red Sox rivalry officially reaches outer space.

Epstein's plan works as all YES satellites are either destroyed or rendered ineffective, but results in the loss of all the NESN satellites in the process.

When both the Yankees and Red Sox threaten to undertake space programs under the code names Operation Play Really Really Deep for the Sox and LLG for Let's Launch George space program (referring to the rocket the Yankees are developing which is shaped like a bat and named the George the First) the nation, and indeed the world, decide they have had enough.

With full backing by the United Nations, the United States issues an ultimatum to the rivals ordering them to cease play within twenty-four hours or face seizure of the ballparks, players and cities by an US led United Nations Security Anti Fighting Expedition (UNSAFE for short).

Larry Lucchino attempts to purchase UNSAFE, but is thwarted at the last minute when the Steinbrenners purchase the United Nations and convert it into an auxiliary parking garage with shuttle bus service to Yankee Stadium.

With UNSAFE disbanded, the Yankees attempt to close out the Red Sox by coordinating an amphibious landing right in Boston with players steaming across the Atlantic from the Yankees European partner, Manchester United: "The British Yankees."

The amphibious landings are a disaster as the English "footballers" are unfamiliar with American baseball and are easily repulsed. Once again, Bostonians make a defiant stand against the English.

The resurgent Red Sox take the extra base and head west, while the Yankees strand runners and continue to wait for the big blast to regain momentum.

The big blast materializes when the Red Sox reach Danbury, Connecticut, the equivalent of rounding third and heading for home, The Bronx.

The Steinbrenners fire absolutely everyone in New York State and hire everyone in New Jersey and the previously neutral Pennsylvania to replace them. The new players, citizens and residents - thrilled to be liberated from New Jersey and Pennsylvania - rally to shut down the Red Sox running game and keep them close to the bag in Danbury.

Raising funds via increased ticket prices (a box seat at Yankee Stadium now costs 16.5 million for a twenty pack of "Tuesday Game Day Special") and plethora of marketing deals ranging from apparel (every article of clothing sold within New York, New Jersey and eastern Pennsylvania must contain a Yankee "NY") to automobiles (cars sold within Yankee territory come in two licensed colors: pinstriped or road gray), Hank Steinbrenner claims to paraphrase Henry Ford when he proclaims, "They can have any color car they want as long as they shut the hell up and buy it!"

With play still deadlocked in the 714th inning it becomes clear that the Yankees are acquiring financial capital to augment their roster with additional free agent acquisitions. RSN reacts by charging that since the Yankees can't seem to close the deal on the field of play, they will simply try to outspend the Sox, to which the Yankees reply, "And?"

This statement proves to be the turning point in the game. The Yankees realize the Sox have given them the key to victory by exposing their greatest weakness, ripe for exploitation.

In a daring dash for home plate and a financial suicide squeeze, the Steinbrenners raises hot dog prices to $1,214 and beer to $2003 for single serve kegs to raise further capital. When necessary funds have been raised, the baby bosses buys Canada , the Atlantic Ocean and the lower atmosphere above New England. The Steinbrenners makes the check for Canada payable to Great Britain, but major controversy arises when it is revealed the checks for the Atlantic and the lower atmosphere are made payable to "God."

The Yankees run the bases with abandon and slide hard into Sox infielders as they retake the initiative and claim sole possession of first place.

The Red Sox are finally vanquished when Hal Steinbrenner announces he has made a deal with the Devil (actually another deal, the third in family history) in exchange for his soul and the souls of Yankee fans worldwide. The devil renders the Red Sox ineffective as they swing and miss, take called third strikes, make the last out at third and miss the cut-off man for all eternity. Theo Epstein is stricken with permanent indecision.

The Yankees stroll into first place and win the American League Eastern Division.

Immediately after defeating the Sox, the crafty Steinbrenner family buys the Vatican, returns the atmosphere and the Atlantic Ocean to God, but retains a sponsorship whereby cloud formations over New England will form in the shape of the Yankee "NY" and the tide will always rush away. The Steinbrenners use the influence and power of their newfound employees and partners to reverse the deal with the devil and have the Pope perform blanket exorcisms at Yankee Stadium to reclaim the souls of loyal fans. The devil is ultimately vanquished, but refuses to relinquish the soul of The Boss, rightly claiming that he already owns George's soul under the terms of a 1977 & 1978 deal. And a 1996 deal. And 1998, 99 & 2000. And the recently completed 2009 deal.

Apparently destined to forever follow in the footsteps of the Yankees - except for that one year when they did not - the Red sox take a page from the Yankee playbook when GM Epstein and owner Lucchino do dinner and drinks with the devil at the ruins of the Cask & Flagon across from the ruins of Fenway Park. The devil, delighted to return to Boston, states it is nice to be back, not having visited Boston since October 2004.

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