One of the running themes regarding the current World Series is which team and fanbase is the most reviled: the Cardinals and their "holier than thou" attitude versus the Red Sox and their "beard and grittiness" obsessions, among other things. Obviously sustained success is a big part of being despised by fans around the league, and then bloviating about that success (be it by fans or members of the media) only irritates further. This has all put the Yankees and their ho-hum 85 win performance on the back-burner. That's just no fun at all. The Yankees are to be loathed by leaps and bounds more than any other franchise and need to get back to that status over the offseason. And fortunately for them and you, dear reader, I know just how they can do just that.
Sign polarizing free agents
Brian McCann drew a lot of attention this season for his attempted obstruction of Carlos Gomez after a mouthy home run trot. Considering the divisive opinions that incident created, he'd be a perfect addition. Next add a couple of the players suspended for their involvement in the Biogenesis scandal like Jhonny Peralta. Somebody has to pick up the steroid-related boos if Alex Rodriguez misses the season.
Scratch that, just sign ALL of the good free agents
Let's really go overboard here. People hate when the Yankees snap up good players by throwing gobs of cash at them. The perception of the Yankees attempting to "buy" championships must be reinforced. Being stingy is for those small market chumps. Take from them and rebuild the roster in a way that would make George Steinbrenner proud. Obviously, resigning Robinson Cano is an absolute must. The Yankees don't lose great players ever, no matter the cost.
Have a top executive say something inflammatory
In spite of the tumult that surrounded the Yankees 2013 season, the best venom that came from Yankees brass was only directed at A-Rod, and other fans hate that guy anyways. We need to get a couple of drinks into good ol' Hank Steinbrenner and have him make some disparaging comments about other teams and players. Have Randy Levine call Ben Cherington a pencil-necked geek. Start stirring the pot!
Have the players make public boasts
Nothing like a few select quotes about how awesome you are from your players to rile up everyone around the league. After signing ALL the free agents, mention keywords like "dream team" and "dynasty". People love humility, so we need to go for the exact opposite here. I also suggest Brett Gardner start only referring to himself in the third person.
Convince the greatest closer ever to come back as a villain
This one is the most far-fetched, but boy would it enrage the rest of baseball. After all the pomp and circumstance of his farewell 2013 season, Mariano Rivera makes a last-minute decision to return for 2014. And in an un-retirement ceremony at Yankee Stadium, he burns all the thoughtful (and not so thoughtful) presents opposing organizations gave him. The only Yankee that even rivals seemed to like does a 180 degree turn to pure villainy. It would be hilarious.
We can't have these other teams stealing all the hatred that is rightfully ours. The Yankees are the overdog. The house. US Steel. Build the team back into a contender in the most obnoxious way possible and we can get back to being those damn Yankees, rather than those afterthoughts.