Savoring Silver Anniversary of Detroit Tigers’ Last World Championship

A quick walk down Detroit Tigers memory lane: Today is the 3rd anniversary of Magglio Ordonez' walk-off 3-run homer that won the ALCS and launched the Tigers into the World Series (also the first epic late-inning playoff loss for Huston Street, then of the Oakland A's). Which also means it was exactly 25 years ago today that the Detroit Tigers last celebrated World Series triumph, with an 8-5 victory over the San Diego Padres in Game 5 down at the Corner (and my childhood hero Alan Trammell named Series MVP). Sadly, the stadium is gone now. But the memory lives on. Here's hoping that Detroit repeats the feat sometime before that anniversary turns golden and my hair turns (completely) gray. … [Read more...]

Historic Hillsdale Homecoming Win: Chargers Down No. 1 GVSU Lakers

You'll grant me a few indulgences for posting this one -- after all, how often do I bother to write about my alma mater's athletic feats? Not too often, I can assure you. But what happened yesterday in the old Hills & Dales on homecoming rates among the most historic gridiron happenings on Muddy Waters Field: the Chargers toppled the number 1 team in Division II, the perennial powerhouse Grand Valley State Lakers, 27-24. Well, historic enough to make the Detroit News, anyway. The last time Hillsdale beat conference foe Grand Valley? Fifteen years ago, the year before I began my (non-athletic) college career. True, because it certainly didn't happen during my brief tenures as sports editor for both the Hillsdale Collegian (1997) and … [Read more...]

Enjoying (and Sweating Out) the Tigers’ and Rox’ Late-Season Chases

If you live in my world, politics largely has taken a back seat this week. My two MLB teams -- the Detroit Tigers and Colorado Rockies -- are respectively locked in the races for the last two playoff berths. Last night, in probably the most consequential game of the Tigers' regular season so far, ace Justin Verlander got it done and the team survived some last-minute cardiac-inducing pressure from the ever-pesky Minnesota Twins. Meanwhile, everyone in Colorado knows about Chris Iannetta's 11th-inning pinch hit walk-off homer to take down the Brewers at Coors Field. Result? With five games to go, Rockies have a three-game lead and a magic number of three to claim the NL wildcard, and the Tigers have a two-game lead and a magic number … [Read more...]

Thank YOU, Ernie Harwell

I'll admit it. I'm a fool for baseball. And one of the greatest reasons I love the game so much walked out onto the field at Comerica Park this evening -- Ernie Harwell, 91 years young, diagnosed with terminal cancer, but as optimistic and gracious and gentlemanly as ever -- to say thank you:"It's a wonderful night for me," Harwell said. "I really feel lucky to be here, and I want to thank you for that warm welcome. I want to express my deep appreciation to Mike Ilitch, Dave Dombrowski and the Tigers for that video salute and also for the many great things they've done for me and my family throughout my career here with the Tigers. "In my almost 92 years on this Earth, the good Lord has blessed me with a great journey, and the blessed … [Read more...]

God Bless Us Detroit Tigers Fans, ‘Cause We’re Crazy Enough to Believe

For the baseball fan, September is a sweet (or bittersweet) time of the year. As a Detroit Tigers fan, I've been accustomed to more of the latter. But the pennant race is on, and both my Tigers and my Colorado Rockies are in the thick of things. An interesting tidbit today from a Rasmussen survey of baseball fans:Fans of the Detroit Tigers are now the second most confident fans, with 68% who think their team will win a World Series title this year. Overall, only 4% of all baseball fans think the Tigers will win. The Tigers currently lead the AL Central division by 3.5 games. … [Read more...]

All-Star Break: Detroit Tigers Putting the Hurt on Cleveland and AL Central

Mercifully, for the sake of fellow blogger Civil Sense, I haven't harped on the American League Central race in awhile. But the All-Star break is upon us, and a good time for reflection on the standings: 1. Detroit Tigers 48-39 -- 2. Chicago White Sox 45-43 3.5 GB 3. Minnesota Twins 45-44 4 GB 4. Kansas City Royals 37-51 11.5 GB 5. Cleveland Indians 35-54 14 GB It's not looking good for the Indians, especially after the symbolic 10-1 spanking Detroit delivered to them this afternoon. GO TIGERS! … [Read more...]

Looking for a Good Summer Fantasy Read? Try The Way of Shadows

Are you looking for a good summertime fiction read? A fresh story in the fantasy/action genre that is simultaneously fast-paced and in-depth? Then I urge you to buy a copy of The Way of Shadows, the first in the Night Angel trilogy by Brent Weeks. I love to read, but the fantasy/action genre -- nor fiction in general -- is typically not my cup of tea. Then again seldom do I know the author personally, as in this case. Brent and I went to Hillsdale College together, are fellow Sinfonians. Having that sort of a personal connection with the author made it easy to pick up the book. But once I did, the crisp and colorful storytelling, the unpredictable plot, and the compelling characters were what kept the pages and chapters quickly … [Read more...]

Not Exactly the 1984 Detroit Tigers, But Well Ahead of the Cleveland Indians

It's been a couple weeks since my last update on the baseball season for Civil Sense. A great piece in yesterday's Detroit News recounts the amazing feat of the 1984 Tigers' 35-5 start. A quarter century later, this year's Detroit squad is nowhere near the caliber of dominance of the franchise's last world champions. But the Tigers -- winners of six straight -- are like their 1984 predecessors in that they are in first place at the 40-game mark of the season. In this case, 8.5 games ahead of the Cleveland Indians. Happy Friday! … [Read more...]

Wow! Curtis Granderson and Tigers A Leap Ahead of Last Place Indians

I have a friendly rivalry going this season with blogger Civil Sense from The Colorado Index. Today seemed like a good a time as any to point it out. Baseball is a long season, but his Cleveland Indians have slipped to the worst record in the Major Leagues after back-to-back home shutout losses to my Detroit Tigers. Tonight's 4-0 victory was great, but the finish couldn't match the 1-0 thriller on Friday -- when Tigers ace Justin Verlander carried his two-hit shutout into the ninth inning. Grady Sizemore came to the plate with one on and one out when ... well, watch for yourself: Yep, that's my boy: Curtis Granderson. And my Detroit Tigers a game out of first place and six games ahead of Cleveland. Ouch, Civil Sense. Ouch. (It … [Read more...]

Ryan Frazier Fires Up Crowd at Colorado Tax Day Tea Party

El Presidente has posted video of the Denver Tax Day Tea Party, but the Grand Junction Daily Sentinel has the video coverage of Colorado's largest Western Slope gathering. The apparent highlight of the event was the rousing speech of Ryan Frazier, who also announced a formal step toward a U.S. Senate campaign (watch the video below the fold): … [Read more...]