It’s not just God who hates Cleveland sports anymore.
According to a Nielsen Co. Internet algorithm, the Cleveland Indians are the most hated team in baseball. That’s right, the Indians finally ranked ahead of the Boston Red Sox, the New York Yankees, and every other team in the AL Central.
Predictably, New Yorkers are up in arms, claiming that the study doesn’t really rank which team is most hated. (We all know it’s the Yankees, unless Boston Red Sox fans count as a team.) It merely ranks “the correlation between positive and negative feelings generated by each team based on their starts to this season,” or something along those lines, Aaron Lewis, a communications director at Nielsen, told the New York Daily News. And who wouldn’t believe that a guy who could come up with a line like ““the correlation between positive and negative feelings generated by each team based on their starts to this season” is a communications director, and therefore correct?
The algorithm is a bit more complicated than the one Nielsen uses to determine how many people watched American Idol on a given night. It measures things such as online message-board posts about the Indians and the rest of Major League Baseball, as well as the stupid things former Indian Mike Bacsik says on Twitter, to determine which teams got mocked the most.
Most likely the algorithm just measured what the Indians’ own fans were writing about Jhonny Peralta. You can bet there’s not many other baseball fans talking about a team whose best player’s batting average has dropped four years straight. (That’s Grady Sizemore, unless Shin-Soo Choo has passed him.) There’s probably not much interest outside of the Cleveland area in a team whose designated hitter, Travis Hafner, is more of a designated whiffer with 17 strikeouts in 77 plate appearances. Who could imagine anyone west of the Mississippi – or heck, even the Cuyahoga – yapping it up about closer Chris Perez over beers?
During awards ceremonies there’s usually a moment for the winners to give thanks to those who helped get them to the top spot. So before the orchestra plays us out, let’s thank those behind the Indians’ hate ranking:
- Thank you to dgeneral, who wrote on the Cleveland.com message boards “Dolan death spiral has reached fever pitch. The misery of a Dolan ownership is a cruel cross to bare (sic) for Indians fans.”
- Thank you to skatingtripods, who on TheClevelandFan.com message boards wrote “Grady Sizemore blows.” Yeah, that probably scored pretty high on the Nielsen algorithm.
- And thank you to the Cleveland sports blogger, who have come up with names such as Cursed Cleveland; Cleveland Frowns; Mistake By The Lake; and Wait ‘Til Next Year, Again. Oh, and of course, God Hates Cleveland Sports.
- But most of all, thank you, Cleveland Indians. Thank you, Larry Dolan, for buying high when you should have been lying low. Thank you for not being able to afford to run a major league franchise. Thank you, Mark Shapiro, for trading CC Sabathia and Cliff Lee in back-to-back seasons while getting back a bushelful of players who don’t even look good on paper. (Lou Marson? Michael Brantley? Jason Donald? Really?) Thank you for giving a three-year contract to a manager whose only previous experience was guiding the Washington Nationals to hundreds of losses.
Most hated team in baseball, and it’s not even a month into the season. Congratulations, Cleveland Indians! Looks like everyone else has finally caught up with God.