Most of the previews and analysis that you'll be seeing regarding the Yankees' upcoming season will focus on such unimportant matters as roster construction and player projections. But the events that unfolded Tuesday made it clear that there are forces out there that could easily impact the Yankees beyond any roster cuts or additions. Sure, Mark Teixeira was able to ward off the bees with his curious honey stores, but next time the event might not be so easy to quell. I've gathered some of the possible anomalies that could surface in fate's never-ending attempts to derail the Yankee Machine.
The Injury Bug
A mythical creature that is often found nesting in the locker rooms of older teams and those who employ Brian Roberts. It has already consumed much of the Atlanta Braves and Oakland A's pitching staffs, and could come for the Yankees and their elder statesmen if they're not careful. Eduardo Nunez has claimed to have seen "The Injury Bug" parked in his driveway.
Suggestions: walk around in bubble wrap and take your vitamins. Don't be Carl Pavano.
Spending a ton of time in close quarters with other filthy, sweaty humans. Shaking the hands of filthy, snot-covered children. Viruses are everywhere and can spread like wildfire through a team. Anything from the common cold to the Black Death could cause multiple key players to miss games at crucial moments in the season.
Suggestions: lots of hand sanitizer and Grandma's Famous Chicken Soup.
Even More Insects!
Bees are far from the worst wicked insect that could plague the Yankees this season. Did you know that there are over a dozen different types of insects roaming the Earth? Some will poison you, some will sting you and others will lay eggs in you. Imagine a swarm of bullet ants running into the Yankees dugout in the middle of an inning against the Red Sox! How does a team come back from that? Sure, a lot of these horrible insects aren't native to the United States, but all it takes is a player coming back from some time off in his native land with a few of the buggers in his suitcase and it's all over.
Suggestions: plenty of OFF! and make sure to not leave food lying around. That's how you get ants.
After doing research in preparation for this article for a few minutes, it became apparent that the prevailing opinion in the "scientific community" is that zombies do not exist. But my eyes aren't fooling me, zombies are everywhere. Television, movies, romance novels, Wal-Mart. They're all over the place. So it's important that should any Yankees player become one of the living dead, that his teammates dispatch of him posthaste or else the entire roster could be lost in a mere matter of hours.
Suggestions: remove the head, or destroy the brain.
Oh, it's coming.
Suggestion: hope you're playing in a domed stadium when it goes down.
Some of these situations are probably less likely to occur than others, but it's important that the entire Yankees organization be prepared for any possible scenario. It's not just other teams gunning after the Yankees. It became clear on Tuesday that the very forces of Nature are conspiring against the team to stop their run to another title. And it's sure to be worse than midges or bees next time.