The New York Yankees are probably the MLB team with the most fans in America and the world.
However, they might also be the most hated team in baseball: a lot of people love them, but they are hated even more.
For a time, they were called the “Evil Empire.”
Speaking with the media after arriving in Houston, Yankees pitcher Luis Severino discussed pitching in hostile environments, with fans cursing, booing, and making noise in favor of the home team.
It’s something that Yankees players are used to, as Severino stated.
An Odd Jab At A Divisional Rival
During his intervention, however, the right-hander had a random jab at the Tampa Bay Rays about their attendance numbers.
“Luis Severino is asked about pitching in a hostile environment such as Houston: ‘Everywhere we go, we’re not liked. It’s not here, it’s everywhere. The only place that likes us a little bit is Tampa because they don’t have a lot of fans there,'” Yankees Videos tweeted, with Severino’s quotes.
Luis Severino is asked about pitching in a hostile environment such as Houston:
"Everywhere we go, we're not liked. It's not here, it's everywhere. The only place that likes us a little bit is Tampa because they don't have a lot of fans there" 🤣 pic.twitter.com/8nGIGYRqNj
— Yankees Videos (@snyyankees) October 19, 2022
While it was an odd time to bring that up, the Yankees pitcher is right: because of the low number of fans in attendance in games at Tropicana Field and the high ratio of Yankees supporters in Tampa, New York often feels like the home club in regular season games between the two teams.
The situation is a bit different in the playoffs, though.
However, in 2022, Tampa was 28th out of 30 teams in average attendance with just under 14,000 fans per game.
There is some beef between the Yankees and the Rays, but the most likely scenario is that Severino was answering the question and that thought had just popped to his mind.