Losing to the Tigers is bad enough. Dude, spare me all that crap about “these are major league ballplayers… gotta always have your game face on.” The Tigers are a sub-.500 team and we should be dismantling them every time we roll into town. We should drive up with “Detroit Rock City” blaring from the bus and Manny and Papi in full KISS make-up, and just leave them whimpering like spent groupies when all is said and done.

Losing on a blown save? Man, that’s five fists to the twig and berries. That’s walking in on your girlfriend tonguing Andy Dick. That’s finding out that someone replaced your rare copy of the Blade Runner workprint with six hours of “According to Jim.”

We had a number of chances to put this one away. The best was probably in the fifth, when Petagine came up with the bases loaded and promptly grounded into a first-catcher-first double play. Bam. And while we were able to construct a decent 6-3 lead, the pitching couldn’t make it stand. And watching Schilling walk off that mound after giving up the game winner to the great John McDonald churned my gut like the big clam plate at Kelly’s.

Say what you will about the guy, I could feel his pain. I’ve seen some pitchers give it up, then head off the mound like they can’t wait to tear into a post-game meat sammich. Not Schill. This stuff burns him. You know he’s constructing a voodoo doll of Dmitri Young as we speak. And you know the guy’s never gonna hide behind excuses. That said, the facts are that before last night’s collapse, he’d given up four runs on four hits [three of those being home runs] in his last two appearances. And as for the confidence level when he steps into a game? He hasn’t reached Heathcliff Slocumbville yet, but he may be one or two towns over.

And if that didn’t sting enough, you realize the Yankees are pulling yet another Lazarus, nipping at our toes and winning five straight. Nevertheless, we suck it up. We head for tomorrow. We look forward to seeing Jon Papelbon take the hill. We come back strong. Booyah.

Oh, and at one point the game was delayed by a naked fan cavorting on the field. Back in the day, this sort of tomfoolery would have been brushed under the rug like empty beer cups… a slap on the wrist, maybe a night in the pokey, then the dude’s back on the street, bragging to his pals about how Alan Trammell saw his naked ass. These days, with the internet and cell phone cameras and digital imagery, there’s a good chance people in France are looking at photos of him being marched off the field, balls out, with their morning croissant. Nice work, champ.