Just wondering, when the Yankees filled that hole yesterday did they bury their dignity?
Let's put aside for a moment the attention-seeking construction worker Gino Castignoli, who just couldn't wait until the new Yankee Stadium was finished before spilling to the press that he'd buried a David Ortiz jersey in fresh cement in the hopes of cursing the new digs. As if you thought we could ignore this ridiculous story, the Yankees went and dug up the offending jersey, spending five hours yesterday jack hammering through concrete, in hopes of avoiding decades of frustration and aggravation because of a shirt buried beneath their home.
Thanks for wasting everybody's time.
It always has been New York, not Boston, obsessed with paranormal fits of fate. Looking for the Babe's piano and the mayor's cookie crumbling were wavering moments, but most Bostonians scoffed at mentions of curses and voodoo while their teams made it increasingly frustrating at times not to give into an easy crutch for their misfortune, Yankee fans reveled in it, seemingly believing that all the woes in Boston were thanks to a dead, fat home run hitter.
Now, ever since Curt Schilling called out "Aura and Mystique" for the frauds they are, the Yankees have floundered come October, while the Red Sox have found glory twice. The Babe is a myth. The curse is a farce. And everything that went along with it, the pain and suffering of Red Sox fans, can be summed up as easily as decades of questionable front office decisions from Jackie Robinson to Jeff Bagwell.
Meanwhile, in the Bronx, they're concerned that polyester threading might lead to 86 years of an Ortiz jinx, digging through two feet of concrete to pull out an absolutely intangible sign of their impending doom.
Yankee fans always had the curse to lean on when it came to facing their rivals. Now that it's "dead," they're walking around in the dark seeking enlightenment, a group of lost soldiers that Scientology could have a field day with.
Along comes Castignoli, and New York can't even wait 48 hours before proving to the world its dysfunctional front office ways. Initially laughing it off as a prank, the Yankees couldn't get the jersey out of their collective heads, ordering it dug up at the site yesterday, where construction workers held it up with alternating smiles and looks of embarrassment for the cameras.
As for Castignoli, Hank Steinbrenner urged the other workers to "kick the (expletive) out of him" while the team considers filing criminal charges against him. Can Yankee fans counter by suing the Yankees for making an entire fan base look like a group of nail-biting worry warts?
Criminal charges would be nothing new for Castignoli, once pleading guilty for his involvement in a $40 million illegal gambling operation with ties to the Gambino crime family, according to the New York Post. He was also busted in 2002 during a roundup of mob-connected gambling dens. Makes you wonder exactly how much experience the guy has with burying things in concrete.
It all makes us believe that you won't see Castignoli throwing out the first pitch at Fenway anytime soon, despite his much-publicized allegiance to the team. But even with that in tow, the whole thing strikes us as a little odd. I mean, why didn't the man wait until the place's completion before crowing to the Post about his burial? Is it a little convenient that some of his co-workers remembered precisely where he might have buried the jersey? And where were Castignoli's photos? In an ideal, i.e. intelligent, way of approaching this, you bury the jersey, document it, then wait until the place opens before you reveal your photos, right?
But the man couldn't wait. Full of pride, he just had to boast. And just two days after scoffing about the whole thing, the Yankees overreacted and chopped up the cement to assure that their storied history didn't risk being tainted over the next century thanks to a shirt in the cement. You'd think there couldn't be any more concern for the future of their favorite franchise, and then Yankee fans have to endure two innings of Phil Hughes last night.
Joining SportsCenter last night, Castignoli was hailed as "the newest hero of Red Sox Nation." Quite the contrary. Nobody in "Red Sox Nation" is obsessed with any ridiculous curses. Castignoli makes himself sound like a foolish "fan" perpetuating the belief of jinxes and long-term heartache at the foundation of the clairvoyant. Those people are called Yankee fans, something their brass proved by overreacting to an insignifcant development on Sunday.
Go ahead, sue the guy. Because we just can't get enough of witnessing what a buffoonery the Yankees have become.