The new Yankee Stadium may be cursed!
A devilish Boston fan working on a concrete crew at the $1.3 billion stadium covertly buried a Red Sox T-shirt under what will become the visiting team's locker room to jinx the Yanks, two construction workers told The Post yesterday.
"In August, a Red Sox T-shirt was poured in a slab in the visitor's clubhouse. It's the curse of the Yankees," one worker said. "Nobody knows about it. It's in the floors, it's buried."
The workers say they now fear that they unwittingly helped hex their beloved Bronx Bombers.
"I don't want to be responsible for sinking the franchise," said a second worker, who witnessed the sabotage. "I respect the stadium."
The Post has withheld their identities because they are not authorized to speak to media.
This latest hex is above and beyond any typical ritual - like wearing a lucky shirt or hat - that fans typically do to boost their luck.
"It sounds a little unprecedented to me," said Tim Wiles, director of research at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown.
"I guess if the Yankees go 86 years in the new ballpark without a win we'll know if we are on to something," he said, referring to Boston's previous infamous losing streak after they sold Babe Ruth.
"If I was a Yankees fan, that is my house. I don't want a Red Sox [T-shirt] under my house," he added.
Chris Wertz, co-owner of the Red Sox bar Professor Thom's in the East Village, laughed at the ingenuity of the worker.
"I won't be surprised in the least bit to see that visiting locker room torn up and relaid right away," he said. "This what makes the game special for baseball fans. It's not a mean thing, but something they will take seriously."
Red Sox fans, he said, will see the buried garment as a good-luck charm, especially after years of seeing the retired numbers of four legendary players displayed in Fenway Park.
It has long displayed "9" for Ted Williams, "4" for Joe Cronin, "1" for Bobby Doerr and "8" for Carl Yastrzemski - which comes out to 9-4-18, the day before the World Series that resulted in the last Red Sox championship until 2004.
Baseball historians said these kinds of superstitions are not something to be scoffed at.
"Curses start off very easily. It's all the power of suggestion and they take on a life of their own," said Dan Gordon, co-author of the 2007 book "Haunted Baseball."
"Even the 'Curse of the Bambino' didn't really take off until the 1980s. Before then it was just hard luck," he said.
Mickey Bradley, co-author of "Haunted Baseball," said a worker is said to have buried an unknown good-luck charm in a water main trench of the current Yankee Stadium back in 1920.
"Prior to that, they never they won a World Series," he said.
Players can also bring curses to their teams.
"Look at the curse of A-Rod. The Yankees haven't won since [Alex Rodriguez] came to their game. There's probably more to that than a T-shirt," said Peter Nash, author of "Boston's Royal Rooters," a history of Red Sox fans.
"This just takes the rivalry to whole new level. If you look at 2004, the Yankees were up three games. If Boston lost that, seriously, the whole franchise would have been decimated," said Nash, who performed with the rap duo Third Bass before writing about baseball.
"I think there is a curse in effect already. Maybe the Red Sox T-shirt is like the icing on the cake, a nice little F-you from Boston," he said.
The year 2004, of course, was the year the Red Sox broke their own curse and won the World Series after beating the Yankees in the playoffs.
Still, stadiums have long had their own curses.
One of them is the 1945 "Billy Goat" curse at Wrigley Field, the home of the Chicago cubs.
Legend has it that William Sianis placed a curse on the team after stadium staff refused to let him enter with his pet goat. The team hasn't played in the World Series since 1945.
Superstition in stadiums can also cut the other way and help a team.
The Texas Rangers languished in their old stadium from 1972 to 1993, until they moved into a new ballpark the following year. Since then, the team won three division titles. More recently, the Tampa Rays may be cursed by their own new stadium, which was partially built over a cemetery.
Over the past decade, the team had the worst record in all of Major League Baseball four times and finished last place in their division nine times.
As for the buried emblem of hated Boston, the Yankees say they aren't the least bit worried.
"It sounds like a tall tale, and it would take more than a Red Sox T-shirt to put a curse on the Yankees," said team spokesman Howard Rubenstein.
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