By Randy Miller
Joe Buck is claiming to be a Yankees fan.
Don’t believe him? Convinced Fox’s long-time lead MLB (and NFL) voice really is a Yankee hater?
Buck claimed otherwise Monday morning when he was a guest on Howard Stern’s satellite radio show.
“It’s crazy,” Buck told Stern. “Yankees fans believe that I don’t like the Yankees, which if you know anything about television and ratings and success …
“If there’s one team, Red Sox two, Cubs … you want these teams in the postseason. You’re going to get bigger ratings. Where do you want to be in the postseason?”
Stern brought up the Yankees when asking Buck about his role in Alex Rodriguez suffering a pre-game injury in August 2010.
“Unbelievable,” said. “I’m with my sister’s son, Jack. I walk out of the dugout … and Alex, who’s become a good friend of mine, is standing there at third base while they’re taking batting practice. And he looks over to me and goes, ‘Hey, Joe. I said, ‘Hey Alex.’ And I keep walking.
“He says, ‘Hey Joe, and he’s starting to say, ‘Is that your boy?’ And Lance Berkman, who was playing for the Yankees at the time, hits a rocket. It crunches him right under his knee. He goes running out one-legged into center field. He’s rolling around in the grass in center field grabbing his leg.
“I’m standing down there and I’m like, ‘Oh my God, I hope nobody saw me talking to him.’ And eventually one of the players said, ‘I know how he got hurt. He was talking to that Fox guy, Buck.’
“Then the horde of media guys turn on me. They said, ‘What happened?’ I said, I just walked out on the field. He turned his head to say hi, and he got whacked.'”
Rodriguez wound up being scratched from the game, but the Yankees beat the Red Sox without him to maintain a 1 1/2 game lead in the AL East over Tampa and go six up on third-place Boston.
“It was the back cover of the Daily News,” Buck told Stern. “It said, ‘What the Buck?’ All I did was exist and I got (publicly ridiculed) for that.”
More than six years later, Buck knows a Yankees fans still can’t stand him.
“They hate me,” he said.