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Karma, meet The Bronx. The Bronx, run for cover.

Posted by Bill Koch on October 20, 2010

Karma’s a bitch, isn’t it Yankees fans?

Now you’re getting a little taste of how the other half has lived for all these years while you were racking up those World Series titles that you love to talk about so much. Tuesday night was a pretty good lesson for everyone in The Bronx that the Baseball Gods won’t always be on your side, no matter how much you spend to buy their affections.

Game 4 of the American League Championship Series hit the new Taj Mahal like a tidal wave and put the Texas Rangers 27 outs from the chance to play for their first championship in franchise history. That 10-3 shellacking must have made George Steinbrenner turn in his grave. It doesn’t look like New York can do anything to stop a team that flashes claws and antlers as warning signs, hilariously mocking baseball’s traditions and its winningest franchise in the process of building a 3-1 series lead.

Your chances went begging when Josh Hamilton turned back into Roy Hobbs, Joe Girardi fell asleep at the wheel, the umpires declined to save you when Lance Berkman allegedly went deep and David Robertson got the call out of the bullpen. It’s a perfect storm of deliciousness that tastes better than all the chowder in Red Sox Nation.

A.J. Burnett was the man to come to the rescue? That must be what Girardi thought when he greedily left the overpaid righthander in the game in the sixth inning to face Bengie Molina. There’s no chance that Girardi would have turned down the chance to hold a 3-2 lead after 5.2 innings from Burnett after 17 days of rest if you had offered him that scenario before the first pitch. He must have forgotten about the 5.26 ERA and the fact that he skipped the $80-million man in the ALDS, and he must have remembered quickly when Molina slashed a three-run homer into the night.

That bullpen was going to shut it down from there? Not with arsonists like Robertson, Kerry Wood, Boone Logan and Sergio Mitre coming through the doors with gas cans in their hands and lit matches waiting. Someone put Mariano Rivera on a milk carton – he’s been MIA since the Twins series and can’t go two innings every night.

This rotation was going to get it done? Not with C.C. Sabathia looking average in every area but waist size, the shell of Phil Hughes taking his medicine in a Game 2 pounding and Burnett throwing fastballs down the dick at exactly the wrong time. Cliff Lee isn’t yours just yet.

What happened to Mark Teixeira in this series? That gunshot that hit his right hamstring in the fifth inning and dropped him to his knees, putting him out for the rest of the postseason, couldn’t have been random. If anything, it saved him from going 0-for-25 by the time this is all said and done. Someone must have figured that the most professional and dedicated Yankee that there is had suffered enough by going hitless in his first 14 at-bats.

Not even the next Jeffrey Maier could save the Yankees, further embarrassing Major League Baseball in the process. The league clearly hasn’t learned anything in the last 15 years, as evidenced by the handful of embarrassing missed calls during this postseason that could have easily been overturned through the use of instant replay. Maybe that’s when the Baseball Gods decided that enough was enough, saving the Rangers from Bud Selig and his cronies’ failure to act after some guido from Queens and three of his fellow thugs mugged Nelson Cruz at the right field wall to suck Robinson Cano’s home run into the abyss known as the Yankee Stadium bleachers. Armando Benitez is still on suicide watch somewhere because a 12-year-old kid reached out and made the catch of his life in 1996, and it looked like it was going to happen all over again until order was restored.

Where was everyone going in the ninth inning? Were the 50,000 fans in attendance that eager to go outside to the ghetto and get mugged on the walk back to the subway? Or did they sense that something had changed? They were probably running for their lives, because this never used to happen to New York. Something else might be working against the Yankees now, and it goes well beyond the power of the Rangers.

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