OK. You got me. I quit.
All the hope has been officially sucked out of me. My faith in the abilities of this team is now finally quashed. I am done cheering and hoping against hope that the 2012 Dodgers will come through. Consider me among the convinced. It took quite awhile to do it, but last night did it. I finally went over to the dark side. I now have to agree that Humma was right to count this year's team out, way back in 2010, He saw the future, and it has come to pass.
I have no more finger-crossing, cap-reversing, lucky shirt-wearing rituals left to use. I've tried not watching the games on TV, following the games on Gameday so as the not jinx the team: Never daring to flip the channel for a peek at the action, and have Vinnie explain the action to me.
I've tried being somewhere that there was no TV or radio, so that I wouldn't see or hear the games, only to be crushed when I got home and saw on MLB Network that it was all for naught.
I have been in denial.
Anger was next.
Bargaining was done.
Depression is assured.
Acceptance is where I am now.
I'm out of strength to defend my position. The ramparts have been breached. The enemy has out-flanked me. I've been bombed into submission.
I've run out of reasons to explain this year's failures. The injuries. The bad signings. The McCourt hangover. The just plain unproductive players.
This year I finally retired. A combination of the economy and physical problems forced the issue. I had to leave a well paying job, in a position that I really liked; finally working for a good friend that I've known since I was 24. I had to retire because of suddenly occurring eye problems. I couldn't see well enough to drive the 12 miles to work.
But I saw the silver lining. This would be the year that I would have the time to follow the Dodgers start to finish. I would be with them all the way. I thought that now I could really enjoy the Dodgers. I'd always be home to watch the games from the East Coast without missing the first two innings.
This would be the year. Kemp was coming off an MVP season. Kershaw was coming off a Cy Young Award season. Ethier was healthy.
Then the first month and a half was like a dream come true. No matter what, the Dodgers would find a way to win. They won in blow-outs. They won in squeakers, They won with walk-offs. Everyone but Uribe was having a banner year. Everybody at TBLA was elated. Best record in baseball. Life was good.
Then came June. We lost Kemp and Mark Ellis. The mask slipped and the pretender was exposed. We were losing to the worst teams and the worst pitchers. Wanna beat the Dodgers? Throw a rookie or a soft tossing lefty at 'em. It didn't matter. We lost. Our lead slipped, disappeared, then became a deficit.
Then came the trading deadline. Hope! Got Ramirez, AGon, Victorino, Beckett, Blanton, League, Choate, Crawford and Punto. Some hitters, finally!
Then reality. These guys were not the real thing. they were cardboard imitations of the players we were supposed to get. They couldn't hit, couldn't run or pitch.
Finally got Kemp and Ellis back. They too, had become shadows of their former selves.
Time running out, and now we're aiming at the Wild Card. Bullshit!
The season is over. It was all a mirage.