Yankees announcer lambastes team's national anthem standoff: 'Sophomoric nonsense'


In the middle of a losing skid, the New York Yankees tried to get some laughs in the dugout.

Ahead of their final game of their three-game set against the Cincinnati Reds, two Bombers participated in a national anthem standoff with two Reds players.

The game is simple: stay on the field from the beginning of the national anthem, forl as long as you can. The first team to head back into the dugout loses.

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michael kay in dugout

New York Yankees broadcasters Michael Kay and John Sterling look on before the game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Yankee Stadium on April 20, 2024, in New York, New York. (New York Yankees/Getty Images)

But Yankee manager Aaron Boone eventually had enough, telling his players to get back in the dugout, much to the delight of the Reds dugout.

Thus, much like the Yankees on the field, they lost.

Then, about three hours later, the Reds swept them on the field.

The standoff seemed like innocent fun, but their own announcer was not happy with it.

Michael Kay ripped the Yanks on his radio show Friday afternoon, saying the act was “sophomoric nonsense” that “cheapened the organization.”

“What are we, infants? This is the New York Yankees…” Kay began, while also giving credit to Boone for putting a stop to it. “The New York Yankees don’t play games like that. That’s silly, that’s stupid, it’s childish, it’s infantile.”

Graham Ashcraft

Graham Ashcraft, #51 of the Cincinnati Reds, stands for the national anthem before the game against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium on July 4, 2024, in the Bronx borough of New York City. (Luke Hales/Getty Images)

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“Let other ridiculous teams do that,” he added. “Why would the Yankees do that? It’s dumb. . . . It makes the Yankees look small. They’re doing a stareoff like they’re in Williamsport? Like it’s the Little League World Series? The New York Yankees, you’re wearing pinstripes, baby. You don’t do stuff like that. And you’ve been losing and playing poorly, and this is what you resort to? Come on, guys, you’re better than that.”

He even went as far as to call the participants “nudniks.”

New York Mets announcer Howie Rose wasn’t too fond of the game, either.

“Am I hopelessly out of touch or is this nothing more than a juvenile, selfish, meaningless, irrelevant and frankly embarrassing exercise in stupidity?” he posted on X.

michael kay

Michael Kay during the 75th New York Yankees Old Timers Day on September 9, 2023, at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, New York. (Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

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The Yankees have lost 14 of their last 19 games after a red-hot start, and if things don’t go smoothly this weekend against the Boston Red Sox, they could be in jeopardy of dropping to third place in the AL East sooner rather than later.

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