The New York Yankees are drawing boos in some corners of Boston, but not for their bitter rivalry with the Red Sox.
Yankees players were seen crossing a labor union picket line in front of the downtown Ritz-Carlton Hotel on Thursday. The team faces the Red Sox in the best-of-five American League Division Series that started Friday night at Fenway Park.
Brian Lang, president of Local 26 of Unite Here, called Yankees players "scabs" and urged striking hotel workers to chant "Yankees suck" on Friday.
This is our town. Boston @Marriott hotel workers are on strike and @Yankees crossed the picket line. Don't be like them. Boston is a union town, and #RedSox are union members. Players & fans can pledge their respect for picket lines like #MarriottStrike: https://t.co/oDNa4ap657 pic.twitter.com/4NtJx4RIr1— UNITE HERE Local 26 (@UNITEHERE26) October 5, 2018
"We understand that there's a very intense rivalry between the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox, but quite frankly we're a little outraged they would take it out on working-class people who are out here sacrificing to improve their livelihoods," he told Boston Magazine on Thursday. "This is a slap in the face to all Bostonians.
"The Red Sox would never spit on their fans the way the Yankees are."
A spokesperson for the MLB players' union said the Boston workers should be heard, but also said it is not a new situation.
"From what we understand, these workers have been trying to negotiate a fair contract for more than six months," the spokesperson said. "They deserve to be heard and deserve our support."
More than 1,500 unionized workers went on strike starting Wednesday at seven Marriott-owned hotels in Boston, including the Ritz-Carlton.
Marriott hotel workers in San Francisco, Sacramento and Oakland also went on strike.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.