7. Chicago Cubs
The Cubs have been so awful. That statement works on so many levels, but it's been especially true in recent years. That is, until a surprise 97-win team last year brought Wrigleyville back to life, meaning all of its worst elements were back at it in full force:
Girl from Lincoln Park in the tight pink shirt (purchased that afternoon) in a shockingly good seat who hasn't looked up from her phone in three innings? Check. The "been through it all" fatalist who overreacts wildly to every pitch? Check. The recent Iowa grads who grew up on the Des Moines-based Triple A squad, all the while planning to one day move to an apartment on Sheffield and drink enough to ruin the lives of everyone they encounter? Check. But the thing is, last year kinda snuck up on everyone. This year expectations are through the roof, which means everyone has had a full offseason to gear up for peak horribleness.
6. San Francisco Giants
Did you guys know there was a tech boom in San Francisco? Or that people like fancy artisanal foods there? Did you know, at AT&T Park, you can get porcini donuts topped with raclette foam, or fried Brussels sprouts topped with lemon aioli, or gluten-free flatbreads and strawberry lavender spa water? Would it surprise you to know the majority of people who can actually afford the nice tickets for all of these varied amenities are tech dudes wearing VIP lanyards, fired up because their tech sales team is being taken out by another tech sales team?
It is an overused cliche at this point to talk about the proliferation of the tech industry into every aspect of SF life, but you can actually watch this play out with some intense tension at Giants games, because alongside those d-bags are lots of real, old-school, crusty-as-bread-bowl fans who have that eclectic SF weird-as-hell unpredictability in their eyes, and fondly talk about Candy Maldonado with you until you're forced to recoil from their garlic fry breath. Because everyone is cheering for the same team, the tension does not really boil over, but sits there simmering, like that overrated chowder you're about to pay $18 to eat out of a hollowed-out loaf of bread.
5. Philadelphia Phillies
It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia has given Philly fans the sense that their general awfulness has been rebranded with a fresh-faced comic identity, but the reality is your typical Phillies fans possesses all of the alcohol-riddled obliviousness and stupidity of a Charlie or a Mac with absolutely none of the charm (Dennis is far better groomed than your typical Citizens Bank denizen). The horrible Philly fan has become such a well-worn stereotype that one could understand a little bit of "they aren't actually that bad" contrarian sentiment. But no. Just no. They are 100% that bad and will remain that bad until at least the end of Ryan Howard's contract sometime in 2035.
4. New York Yankees
Remember that mirror scene in 25th Hour? Well, Yankees fans are basically the Bensonhurst Italian section of that scene, times a thousand. No fanbase on Earth is more arrogant, more entitled, more cocky, and more horrible than the Yankees. And the best/worst part of it? They're not that good anymore. All these shitty, long-term, bloated deals, paying $25 million to 35-year-old CC Sabathia this year; $23 million to 35-year-old Mark Teixeira; $21 million to both Jacoby Ellsbury and 40-year-old A-Rod; $15 million to 38-year-old Carlos Beltran. That's $105 million, which would be the 17th-highest payroll in MLB, to five players whose average age is 37. I mean, holy shit, that is honestly just horrendous management.
And the sad thing is it used to be that it didn’t matter. The Yankees would cherry-pick the best players from the smaller clubs and ride them for two years to a couple of World Series wins and reload, and no one else could really do anything about it. But now, despite the literal entire Colorado Rockies payroll they're throwing away to old dudes who might not even start on the Colorado Rockies, they don't even get to claim they have the highest payroll in MLB. And after all that money spent, they're still losing wild-card games. You might think this would make Yankee fans a little bit more subdued, a little bit more modest. You would be wrong. Yankee fans view modesty as a weakness, and so they blow the trumpet harder and louder. Bensonhurst. BENSON-HURST.
3. Boston Red Sox
There has never been a fall from national grace quite like Red Sox fans' tumble over the last 12 years. Before that first World Series win, they were the lovable losers, a provincial town of hilariously accented n'er-do-wells crushing Fenway Franks, that spicy brown mustard lodged in the sides of their "Cowboy Up" Kevin Millar playoff beards. People appreciated the spectacle, and felt a little sorry for the chubby guys from Revere wearing Tom Brunansky jerseys who spent all their money on beers at the game, and ended up passing out in Kenmore station until the blue line picked back up.
And then they won. And as anyone who's ever been to Gillette Stadium can attest, there is nothing worse than Boston fans when a Boston team is winning. But unlike the unshakeable confidence of the Yankees fan, the Sox fan possesses a terrifyingly pessimistic view of the game. Boston sports talk radio is filled with conspiracy theorists and apologists in equal measure, as is Fenway. Luckily, unless you’re in a Yankees jersey, the fans are more likely to pick fights based on local high school Thanksgiving Day football rivalries ("There go those kids from Catholic Memorial! Get 'em!"), but then again, in Boston it’s usually best not to press your luck.