"Spring is here and the time is right for unrealistic goals
Last summer some hit the bottom rung,
but the new year brings high hopes"
-- "All Future and No Past," by The Baseball Project*
It's the year of "IF" for the Yankees.
IF Tanaka can stay healthy (or, probably more accurately, if Tanaka can get healthy) ... IF Ellsbury and Beltran can play a full season ... IF Bettances can pitch like last season, even though he's looked shitty all spring ... IF Teixiera can play like it's 2009 again, even though it's 2015 ... IF CC has his arm strength back now that he's eating Cap'n Crunch by the box again. ... IF ...
Shit, I can go on, but you get the gist. If everything goes right, we might just be able to make an improbable run to the Selig Bowl one-game playoff, and well, anything can happen once you get there!
Congratulations, Hal. You've officially turned Yankees fans into the equivalent of Pirates fans, Brewers fans, Diamondbacks fans, whatever.
We know that we really don't have top-tier talent, but we've got a bunch of "IFs" lined up in our head and we can cling to that "anything can happen" line to keep us delusional enough to be hopeful.
That's not supposed to us, Hal. That "All Future and No Past" song by The Baseball Project is supposed to be for fans of other teams, not us. We're not supposed to be the ones clinging to a longshot hope that if everything goes just right our team might just might sneak into the upper echelon. No, we're supposed to be the cynical bastards at the top waiting for things to fall apart.
The new view sucks, Hal.
So, what happened to our Opening Day hope?
Tanaka was ineffective. Our opponent put a good, young live arm on the mound and the middle of our lineup hit popups and flyballs into the shift. Our run production consisted of a solo home run. And we trotted out a bunch of middle relievers whom nobody has ever heard of.
Not exactly a promising start to the season.
So, Alphonso, stock up on the tequila. I'll order double my normal stock of Utica Club. We just might need it to get through the season.
* -- I'll bring one bit of good news today, though. The Baseball Project is making another Upstate New York appearance. Cooperstown again, this time at the Hall of Fame, on May 16.