By Ken DeLaat
The Tigers are, as predicted, a fun team to follow. They have been blown out on occasion but have been impressive in scratching out comebacks and grinding through tough pitchers to amass a 15-9 record this month. There are different heroes each day, the bullpen has been coming together and the Foley/Lange combo at the end of the pen is the best closing duo they’ve had out there in far too many years.
This week the schedule gets tough with a red hot Ranger team coming to town for 3 followed by a 6 game road trip to Chitown (Sox again) and Philly.
They are a single game out of first place with nearly a third of the season elapsed and who would have thunk it coming out of Spring Training?
Here's what I wrote at the end of April.
“However, the bottom line, as said before, is that they likely aren’t going anywhere barring more things falling in place than even the most optimistic among us rabid Tiger fans can imagine.
“But they will be better in May and June than they were in April and they should cause a lot of contending teams some trouble throughout the summer.”
Ok. They still might not be going anywhere. Their best shot by far is the division because too many really good teams have better records for the wildcard spots and even in the division the likelihood of both the Twins and Cleveland continuing to underperform as they have thus far might not be great.
But believe me if they can hang around for a while and continue to believe in themselves anything could happen.
And while the crowds have continued to be sparse most days, I've been to both CoPa and Tiger Stadium when the team is fielding a winner.
And that half empty stadium I’ll be sitting in on Wednesday to see the series finale against Texas?
If they’re anywhere near close in August, the Park will be packed to the gills and rockin’ like it was ‘06.
The owners of the Oakland A’s should be banned from baseball for what they have done to that franchise. It resembles the first Major League movie when the owner set out to lose as many games and fans as possible.
But the difference is, there’s no happy ending here.
The Mets record for futility that the ‘03 Tigers came a game away from tying will be broken this year as will the hearts of longtime A's fans.
From Major League in case you forgot:
Manager Lou Brown: I have something I think you all ought to know about. It seems that Mrs. Phelps doesn't think too highly of our worth. She put this team together because she thought we'd be bad enough to finish dead last, knocking attendance down to the point where she could move the team to Miami... and get rid of all of us for better personnel.
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