So I know I promised an ALDS/CS update, but it’s been done for more than a week now and all that I’d accurately be able to relate was jumping off the couch (on crutches) at my apartment as I watched Mags’ homer sail over the bullpen, and then, just as quickly, bursting into tears.
Any of my friends will tell you that I’m not, nor have I ever been, a crier. With the exception of the moment when Shadow limped over the final hill in Homeward Bound, I’m fairly certain nothing besides baseball and death in the family have caused me to cry in the last decade. But there it was: I knew the Tigers were going to win, I knew it meant they would go to the World Series, and I knew it would be something dramatic, but I didn’t know how affected I was going to be until I heard the TV announcer scream, "AND THE TIGERS! MARCH! INTO! THE! WORLD! SERIES!"
Yup, it was over for me right then. I’m sobbing on the couch, Kaline (kitty) is hiding in the corner from all the noise, and my phone’s going crazy. First is my buddy J. Davis, a fellow Detroit-er. It went something like this:
J.: Dawn! I had to call you, man…..
J.: Are you….hey! (to others at the bar) She’s cryin, man! I told you!
And the next one from my brother, Pat:
Pat: THE TIGERS WIN THE PENNANT! THE TIGERS WIN THE PENNANT! THE TIGERS WIN THE PENNANT! THE TIGERS WIN THE PENNANT! THE TIGERS WIN THE PENNANT!
Pat: D? You OK? You know, this is the second time in two straight phone conversations that you’ve been crying. You’ve got to stop this.
ME: *blubbering* Tigers………………
Alright then, now that we’re all on the same page…
On Friday, I hopped on a plane bound for Michigan. Saturday morning, I woke up bright and early (which is around 1), gassed up the truck and headed down to Comerica with my dad to pick up our tickets. We’d planned on grabbing a beer at Hockeytown beforehand since it was about four hours before the first pitch, but even then the lines were ridiculous, so we settled for Coney Island at the park.
While waiting outside for my friend to deliver the tickets, we took in the scene. I laughed as I watched not one but three wedding parties hop out of limos, pose in front of the Tiger statues at the park, scream "Go Tigers!" and speed off. While most people are feeling sorry for the bride at this point, I’m hoping my future husband is nice enough to let me stop there for pictures, no matter what time of year it is. If he’s not, well then he’s not worth it….*smiles*
Thanks in no small part to my buddy Martin, my dad and I have two seats to each of the four possible home games. Once we hooked up with him under the big, cement Tiger (sounds like a drug deal, no?), we went in, found our seats and tried our best to keep warm until the game began.
Which wasn’t easy. Keep in mind that even though I grew up in Michigan, I’ve spent the last 18 months in steamy, humid Florida. My face is just now peeling from the sunburn I got laying out at the pool Thursday when it was 92 and sunny. I looked at the scoreboard, which read 44 degrees, and was immediately thankful I let my dad talk me into the hideous teal long underwear pants I had on underneath my jeans (see the World Series photo album for the glamour shot!)
We had great upper-level seats in left field due to my ….uhmmm….disability, and plenty of leg room, which made the crutches a bit more bearable, albeit not much. We were there in plenty of time to catch both teams’ batting practices and watch the people trickle in, as well as take several photos. Mostly though, I just sat there. The sun was shining in my eyes and bouncing off the side of the Broderick Tower, casting its golden rays on downtown Detroit’s storied old buildings. It’s really getting better down here. I remember coming to games when I was younger, and even when I first got my license about 10 years ago, and being afraid to park anywhere but directly outside the stadium. Now, people still joke about the city being run down, but it’s cleaner and there are more businesses and condos and less empty buildings and NOW, after 22 years, a World Series baseball team.