Last week, Robbie Cano beat us with two home runs.
Last night, Phil Hughes beat us with seven solid innings.
Somehow, double-chinned ex-Yankees - when in the presence of John Sterling audio gamma rays - are mutating into superhuman draft-horses, capable of trampling through our fields of summer corn. Lo, it's happened before - long, long ago in more stable universes: We saw it with Moose Skowron as a Dodger, Roger Maris as a Cardinal, and Reggie Jackson as an Angel. A grim little secret about the former Yankee Stadium - the one we dismantled into $39 toothpicks - is some of the ghosts lurking there were not on our side.
But Phil Hughes? Folks, this is Defcon 4! This is Babadook-level... for one terrifying reason: The team that most bothers us in the AL East - the Blue Jays - just signed Joba Chamberlain to a minor league contract. Yes, everybody - including Joba - knows his arm is probably shot. But don't we also know that sometime in August or September, he will emerge from his dugout chrysalis and shut us down for two innings in a key game? Of course, he will! We've seen it happen again and again! They're like zombies, crawling up through the dirt to bite our bare feet. These dead guys lie in wait just to strike at us... and if we face Joba in a key game, we better goddamm have a former Blue Jay to act as counterweight. (Hmmm. Can we re-sign Vernon Wells?)
By the way, this is the reason why Yankee fans hate, hate, HATE the idea of packaging three or four "middling" prospects for a late-season Lance Berkman. (Imagine how our team right now could use Jimmy Paredes and Mark Melancon; that's who we traded.) It's like scattering radioactive spiders throughout a prison yard, knowing their bites will create evil-villains with super spider powers. Dammit, WE DON'T NEED ANOTHER CRUSHER CREEL!
Here are the most frightening AL teams, based on my unofficial, mathematical, Hadron Yankee-Created Monster Threat Calculus.
1. Blue Jays: Russell Martin, Dioneer Navarro, Joba
2. Orioles: Jimmy Paredes, Steve Pearce, Buck Showalter (sort of a Dr. X, emeritus)
3. Mariners: Cano, Austin Jackson, Jesus Montero
4. White Sox: David Robertson, Melky Cabrera
5. Tigers: Shane Green
6. Indians: Nick Swisher (injured)
7. Astros: Lance McCullers (wait, no, that was his dad; hm-mm, this is really scary)
8-12: Orioles, Redsocks, Rays, Angels, Rangers, Royals: Nada.
It's the trade deadline. We are on the verge of sending several future ex-Yankees into the Hadron transformer grid. Whatever happens, the beat writers and YES men will immediately cheer, assuring us that the Yankees gave up nothing in return for a new