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Let’s try this again.

Maybe I’m already well in the throes of irrational behavior, but for some reason, the less than stellar outlook for tonight’s Sux-Yank matchup actually paradoxically makes me more optimistic.

Last year was proof that history means nothing, whether it’s the Yanks’ inability to beat the Angels in the playoffs, the Angels inability to beat the Sox, the 0-8 start against Boston, or A-Rod/CC’s muted showings in the postseason.

So when CC took the mound on Sunday, it looked like we had it in the bag. Our inning-eating brontosaurus has never had problems going the distance, but that was exactly what killed us.

Tonight, AJ Burnett faces the opposite of AJ Burnett at 7:05 in Fenway. The poster child for bipolar disorder faces the even-keeled Jon “I’m allergic to bells and whistles” Lester. While everything about the Boston franchise induces a sharp gag reflex as well as a biting hankering for homicide and rage, the leftie Lester is spared from all of this.

He’s classy, talented, unaffected, and—perhaps best of all—he never makes apologies or excuses for anything. He keeps his mouth shut, lets his outstanding talent do the talking, and has demonstrated nothing but integrity in the face of the game.

He really is more Yankee material than Sux stock.

Alongside the questions of whether we’ll get Jekyll or Hyde tonight out of AJ, are questions of whether Posada and him have sufficiently mended bridges, after being mired in a very publicly contemptuous relationship with each other. Burnett went 0-2 with an 8.85 ERA in four starts versus Boston last season. Last August, AJ went 0-4 with a 6.03 ERA in six starts, including a 14-1 loss at Boston on Aug. 22.

During that gem of an outing, AJ gives up 9 runs, 9 hits, and 3 dings…in 5 innings. And also served up some nice dramatics when he was seen visibly arguing with Posada over pitches. From then on out, Molina was the de facto Burnett battery mate.

But Molina’s gone now, and as such AJ had to spend just as much effort this spring making nice with Jorge as he did working on his control. Rumor has it that the two have patched up their differences. I don’t buy it.

Per my obsession with investigative discourse analysis, it sounds a little fishy when Posada says: "It's perfect. Let's get it out of the way right away. I'm looking forward to it.”

I typically don’t think of things that are “perfect” and that I’m “looking forward to” as the same things that I’m in a rush to get it over with. Of course, he’s gotta keep it light for the press, but I’d feel a lot better if he said something a little more believable rather than spouted out a textbook case of the-catcher-doth-protest-too-much.

Girardi felt the controversy was overblown by the media, noting "it took on a bigger picture because we're in New York." Seriously, I’d love for one day a coach or player to say, “You know what? If only you guys knew the HALF of the shit that’s going down with xyz players. Overblown? Are you kidding? It couldn’t be more UNDERBLOWN, man.”

Instead, we have to listen to every. Single. NY. Athlete/Coach blame the crazy hijinx of Manhattan on any and all poor press. And frankly, do we really need them to be so dismissive of our perceptions? Telling me that the whole Boston-NY rivalry thing is all hype, no substance…is like telling my guy friends that going out with the girls doesn’t entail topless pillow fights.

Sometimes it’s better to leave us to the illusion our misguided perceptions aren’t misguided after all.

So today, let’s look for A-Rod and Tex to do some damage. And also, hopefully our defense won’t be so nonexistent today.

We all know that the stars have to perfectly align for AJ to bring out Good AJ, but we also all know that when he’s on, he’s quite mesmerizing to watch. We’ll win this one. I think I have a lot in faith in AJ tonight because I feel like going with the unpredictable wild card tonight.


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