I gotta admit, I basically experienced this game by osmosis, alternately snoring and cheering and shouting expletives at Eric Chavez and drooling in my bacon sammich. For the last few innings I hit the sack, letting the smooth sounds of Joe Castiglione take me into dreamland, then jumping up, punching at the air when the Sox tied it all up in the top of the ninth.

But after all that drama, I heard Castiggy utter the one line that told me it was okay to go back to bed: “Looks like Piniero’s coming out for the bottom of the ninth.”

So, wanting to spare myself the anguish, the lights went off, and head met pillow. But I couldn’t stop listening. And when Oakland had the bases loaded with nobody out and couldn’t score, the lights went back on. Because as far as I’m concerned, when you’ve got the bases loaded with nobody out and can’t push the winning run across in your home ballpark, you’ve officially lost the right to win the game.

But then the Sox turned around and blew their chance to take the lead in the tenth, when Li’l Dustin — AL Rookie of the Month to you, buddy — got mowed down at the plate trying to score on an Ortiz doubled. Should he have been sent? Hell, I’m not even sure I heard right, as at this point, my mind was skipping between the game and that dream where me and Danny Bonaduce open a butcher shop with a couple 20-year-old Mexican chicks.

All I can say is, what with the nutcrunch of a late night on Sunday, a flight across the goddam country and getting up to face one of the AL’s best pitchers, our boys could have phoned this one in. But they didn’t. They came out, fists flying, Ben Grimm style, and pulled off a total Lazarus in the ninth. Yes, a win would have been nice. But I’ll take a loss when it comes hand-packed in fire and brimstone and Coco Crisp tearing ass around the bases with the game on the line.

And the Yankees lost, as well. Although it’ll soon be time to stop worrying about them and start worrying about… the Blue Jays, I guess?