1. isnotare
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    isnotare New Member

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    Yankees IS or Yankees ARE?

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by isnotare, Nov 5, 2009.

    Ok, so I'm having this argument with this girl.

    First, I said that Yankees is a great team.

    Then she told me to "learn English" and told me that it's supposed to be "Yankees are a great team." I told her that it is "Yankees is" because we are talking about ONE team, not the players themselves, but she continues to argue with me LOL. I also told her to asked her professor which one is correct and she told me that the professor said it is "are" and not "is" because there is an "s" at the end. She also told me she went around asking people in her class and they all said "are". So tell me people, which is correct:

    "Yankees IS a great team." or "Yankees ARE a great team."?

    Can everyone PLEASE tell me what the correct answer is so I can show this thread to her and prove her wrong? =)
     
  2. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Well, being from Massachusetts, I have to say that the correct phrase is "Yankees suck."

    But seriously, the Yankees team is treated as a collection of players, in the same sense that Republicans are treated as a collection of people grouped by their politics, so the plural verb is correct.

    It can be tricky. Some collective nouns emphasize the component members (plural), and some emphasize the organization/container (singular). Some can be either, depending on context.

    Your girlfriend is correct in this instance, even if she has no taste in teams. :)
     
  3. isnotare
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    isnotare New Member

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    But wouldn't it make more sense to put "The Yankees is a great team." since we are talking about one team.

    But if we were to talk about the players, it would be "The Yankees are great players."

    *EDIT* LOL ok let's just say Phillies from now on xD
     
  4. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Note that all the team names are themselves plural. That tips the scale to treating team as plural as well. In other contexts, you can treat team as singular, but not in this context.

    Collective nouns can be tricky that way.
     
  5. Kas
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    Kas Contributing Member

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    Yep, she's right. . .

    But it does get tricky in other instances, and that may be what's confusing you.

    It's better to say. . .

    "The council is divided"

    . . . Because here we're referring to the council as a singular entity. If we said. . .

    "The council are divided"

    . . . it would sould like each member of the council were divided. That's rather improbable, unless some crazy fellow stormed the place with a big chain saw.

    On the other hand, you'd say. . .

    "The council are voting."

    . . . because now we're refering to each person in the council. Multiple people are voting, so we use plural form. It wouldn't make sense to say "the council is voting" because "the council" is not an actual entity that can cast a singular vote.

    Unless. . . several "councils", representing different groups, came together to vote on one issue. Then you could say (after each council had decided how they would vote) that "the council is voting," since in this case, they would only be casting one vote as a collective unit.

    Make sense? lol
     
  6. marina
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    marina Contributing Member Contributor

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    Although it would be pretty accurate to say that hating the Yankees is the law in Cog's home. :p
     
  7. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    However, Yankees is not the subject in that sentence, hating is.
     
  8. Operaghost
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    Operaghost Contributing Member

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    Being form the UK i have no idea how good the Yankees are but (as you can see) are is the correct term
     

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