All-Star Game 2008 Evokes New York City Riots

Harris DeckerSenior Analyst IJuly 15, 2008

We all know whats on the line during the 2008 All-Star Game. Home field advantage for the World Series will be decided by the best players from each position, in each league.

There is one storyline through this All-Star week that is more intriguing than any other.

Of course, the American League will be managed by the great Terry Francona of the Boston Red Sox. For those of you that have been living under a rock for the past 100 years, the Red Sox and Yankees have the best rivalry in all of sports.

Of course, luck would have it that two of the three closers named to the American League team are from these two teams.

I know that it is unlikely, but let's just play the what if game.

Now that the Yankees dynasty has ended, and the Red Sox have become the more dominant team in the American League, there could be a way for Francona to stick it to every single Yankees fan in the building, one more time in the House that Ruth Built.

As the ninth innings roles around, if the American League is winning the game, Terry Francona can choose to make the decision that would take the rivalry to the next level.

As he picks up the phone to the bullpen, what if instead of the greatest closer in history, Mariano Rivera, were passed on, to bring in the new dominant closer, who just happens to be a Red Sock.

Jon Papelbon.

If Mariano Rivera does not come in to pitch the ninth inning of the game tonight, you will most likely have mass riots that should spill over into Boston.

Terry Francona could think of this as his way of starting a new "curse," this time it would be cast on the Yankees, and titled the "Curse of the Papino."

Of course this is not what I think will happen. I believe if necessary, Mariano will be right there where he belongs, dead center in Yankee Stadium. But what if it did?