Reality is a cruel mistress. It is angry and blunt. It is the mortal enemy of illusion.
Orioles fans were re-introduced to it Tuesday night, when the Orioles lost Game 3 of the American League Championship Series, 2-1, and essentially served notice that the only orange-and-black dream left is the impossible one.
OK, the almost impossible one if you want to get technical about it, since it is not totally outside the realm of possibility that they could suddenly take flight today and win the last two games at Kauffman Stadium, then sweep games 6 and 7 at Camden Yards to punch their ticket to the World Series.
It's just that nothing like that ever has happened in the era of...