In defense of Kevin Youkilis

Okay, everyone, please take a few deep breaths and calm down. What Kevin Youkilis said yesterday was harmless and it wasn't meant to personally insult you. And just in case you're reading this and have no idea what I'm blathering on about, Youkilis spoke with the media yesterday when he reported to Yankees camp. This is what he said:

"I'll always be a Red Sox," Youkilis told ESPN New York. "To negate all the years I played for the Boston Red Sox, and all the tradition, you look at all the stuff I have piled up at my house and to say I'd just throw it out the window, it's not true.

"Those were great years in Boston. One bad half-year doesn't take away from all the great years I had there."

The man played with one team for years, won Championships with them and is now with their biggest rival. Should he have worded it the way he did? Maybe not but here's a scenario for you to ponder: Think ahead to February 2014. Robinson Cano is reporting to another team's Spring Training complex because he could not come to an agreement with the Yankees' brass in the off-season. He's talking with reporters and says, "I'll always be a Yankee. To negate all the years I played for the New York Yankees, and all the tradition, you look at all the stuff piled up at my house and to say I'd throw it out the window, it's not true." Then he adds, "Those were great years in New York. Just because we couldn't come to an agreement doesn't take away from all the great years I had there."

The same outraged Yankee fans who are vilifying Youkiis for his comments would be praising Cano. The bottom line is, Youkilis' comments were blown out of proportion because of the Yankees-Red Sox rivalry and because that's what the New York media does. They know stuff like this will drive a certain percentage of the fanbase crazy.

So congratulations to them, it worked.

To his credit, Youkilis met with reporters again this morning and explained himself. Bryan Hoch tweeted, "...Youkilis wanted to clarify yesterday's comments: said his heart is now with the Yankees, just can't erase his years in Boston." See? Move along, nothing to see here.

There are many things for people to be outraged about in sports, for instance, Olympic athlete Oscar Pistorius, the guy everyone was rooting for because he had his legs amputated at one-year-old and who, after years of fighting for the right to compete with able-bodied athletes, got his chance to run in London this past summer, was arrested and charged with the murder of his girlfriend. Or better yet, how about being outraged by the baseball players who keep getting caught driving drunk?

Those are things to be outraged about, not some innocuous statement from a baseball player who just happened to say how he felt in one specific moment.