Believe it or not

Look at what’s happened to me,
I can’t believe it myself.
Suddenly I’m up on top of the world,
Should have been somebody else.

Believe it or not I’m waking on air
I never thought I could feel so free
Flying away on a wing and a prayer
Who could it be?
Believe it or not, it’s just me.

Looks like the light of a new day,
Hit me from out of the blue.
Breaking me out of the spell I was in,
Making all of my wishes come true.

Yes I am using short lived obscure early 80’s TV theme music tonight. (Greatest American Hero for all you young’uns)

With the Tigers winning, there are some remarkable phenomena taking place. Take for example this story that Dave left in the comments :

I’ve mentioned before that I grew up in Detroit (Taylor); lived there until I was 22. For most of my adult life (I’m 43 now), I’ve lived in Chicago. One of the guys who works with me has season tickets to the White Sox. He said last night there was scoreboard watching. When the Royals put up a “4″ early in the game, there was a cheer from the crowd. Toward the end of the game, when the Tigers put up a “4″ in the 8th, there was a collective groan. The White Sox faithful are aware.

There are other fans worried about the Tigers. And it’s not in the sense of “why does team X always seem to get to play the Tigers, we’ll never catch em.” They fear them.

And that’s not all. Other teams are fearing them – and those teams are the Yankees and Red Sox. Jayson Stark with Mike & Mike (insider) mentions that the AL East powers are worried about the White Sox and Tigers running away with the wild card.

One place that those teams, and the Tigers had been talked about pursuing help was in Dontrelle Willis. However, Peter Gammons says (insider) that while 2 teams have called the Marlins, Dontrelle isn’t going anywhere right now.

Finally, in another strange sign, there is a serious demand for Tiger tickets. I work near the stadium, so when I plan on going to a game I just head on down to the ticket office. You can park on the street and hop out and get your tickets. Well, when I went on Monday to get tickets for this weekend, I was stunned to see other cars parked on the street. There was a line of a dozen people waiting to buy tickets. And there were 4 ticket windows open. And it was a Monday, with the team in Kansas City. I’ve never seen more than one person buying tickets during a non game time before.

With Cleveland, New York, and Boston coming to town for a 10 game homestand, the Tigers could very well sell out 7-8 of those games. I’d be surprised if the attendance for any of the games was below 35,000. Between the marquee match-ups, the half off box seats for the Cleveland series, and a city that is buzzing about their team, this stands to be the most electric homestand since Comerica opened.

It’s hard to believe it was just last week I was lamenting the poor attendance.

20 thoughts on “Believe it or not”

  1. I lived less than a mile from Comiskey Park/U.S. Cellular field for four years, and they always had attendance problems, even though they were near the top of the division every year. Last year, with their extremely hot start, it took a couple of months for the fans to really start attending games en masse. It was a whole new world to see tons of people taking the green line south for a White Sox game… it just never happened before that. From what I’ve read on your blog, it sounds like Detroit is reacting similarly.

    –begin hopeful Tigers rant (feel free to not read)–
    I see a nice positive feedback loop taking form now. We’re winners, and we now expect to be able to come back late in games. The fans see the commitment to winning, fill the stadium, and the players are excited to come to the ball park and work their butts off. The fans take pride in the team, the owner takes notice, free agents take notice, and we keep getting better. As long as we keep making good front office decisions, I really like the future of this club.

    Thinking ahead, I just want to see the organization completely turn it around from the past 10 years, from a laughing stock to a powerhouse. Having one year where we make, or almost make the playoffs, is fine and dandy, but we don’t need to be the Royals, which, just 3 years ago, were the challengers to the White Sox, and have now become bottom feeders. One good season just isn’t enough.

  2. Who in the world would have thought that Bonderman would be our least effective starter to-date??? He got the win tonight, but it was against the Royals and it was far from convincing. He’s the only guy that didn’t improve over the winter. Since we credit Rogers for all of the success stories, can we blame him for Bondo’s lack of progress? j/k

  3. Billfer — with the Tigers’ success, and some dramatics by Granderson, I thought of revisiting two things (I think) I read on your site last year.

    First, and foremost, didn’t Curtis treat your kids really well at a minor league game last year? It would be cool if you re-posted that for everyone.

    I know, I should use your search engine. However, I tried finding a very long post by one of your readers who (quite convincingly) said he would never watch or cheer for the Tigs again when Tram got fired. No success. Did I imagine it? I’d like to know where the poster is now, and quote, for him, Detroiter Bob Seger, “You can come back, baby. Rock ‘n’ Roll never forgets!”

    My request is that you post those two again. Go Tigers!

  4. I hear that song, and I think Seinfeld: link deleted

    This start has been unreal. It’s just time to soak it in and remember those who were not faithful to the team during the down times just to rub it in to them.

  5. billfer, please delete the link above for me. I found the Seinfeld clip, but there’s some stuff I didn’t catch on the page that links to inappropriate stuff. I’m sorry for the clutter.

  6. Dude you know that you just guaranteed that every visitor checks out that link! Absolutely hilarious! I love the last minute attempt to correct the inadvertant slip-up.

    Nick, now that you’ve called out an angry, embittered fan, I might as well own up to writing a post decrying the Tigers as the MLB version of the LA Clippers…

    Actually given the Clippers surprising run, I guess that comparison might not be really appropriate.

  7. Joey — I think we all were angry and frustrated and embittered. Thirteen years of No Glory will do that. Disown them? Well…at the time, the guy was making sense. He was proabably a big proponent of OBP…

  8. Eddie – it’s taken care of no. No worries

    Nick – I’ll see if I can find them tonight. I don’t know that I’ll repost the part where someone swore off the Tigers. If I remember correctly it was a pretty passionate note from someone who had put up with a lot of bad baseball. I don’t know that he would want that highlighted, and I certainly don’t want to discourage anyone from commenting.

  9. Wow! Thanks for citing my comment in the body of this blog text.

    To clarify, I am still a Tigers fan. Its hard not to be, even though I’ve lived in Chicago for ummm… 14 years. Having grown up Downriver leaves unerasable loyalties that can’t be changed. I root for the Tigers. I grew up in Ford country, and could never bring myself to drive certain cars. Tyler 8-7100 still is permanently etched in my mind, even though Mr. Belvidere is probably out of business….

    I’ll give my first hand account after I come back from the Tigers/White Sox series here in Illinois in 2 weeks.

  10. Hey, I was upset about them firing Tram, but I wasn’t ready to give up on them (like I had after the strike, I didn’t come back until 2002). If they had hired, say, another Buddy Bell, I would have thought about it. Leyland, however, was a great choice. I think he is the type of manager Tram will become if someone gives him another chance.

    Frankly, I expected this to happen because the Tigers have been playing this sort of baseball, off and on, since 2003. They just weren’t consistent at it; they would give up (like we would) and say “here we go again” when something bad happened. But we all knew that they were a lot better than that, and we were right!

  11. “some remarkable phenomena taking place”

    Tell me about it . . .I started watching ESPN last night to see clips from the game. Saw the opening, flipped the channel quickly becuse the tigers never – AND I mean never – are in the lead off story. Then – I come back about 2 mintues later, and find that I should never say never. I missed the highlights. They were 5 minutes into SportCenter.

    Next week is going to be huge in judging where we are as a team. I expect Comerica to be rockin’.

  12. “If I remember correctly it was a pretty passionate note from someone who had put up with a lot of bad baseball.”

    Understood. I just thought that it was a convincing post leading us all into that grey area of quite possibly abandoning ship. Tram getting fired still leaves me a little hollow and sore inside. I mean, I wonder what is going through his mind down home in San Diego when “Baseball Tonight” comes on TV these days. Sad thought.

    If you ran the post anonymously, I think it would give us some perspective on where we ALL were. I thought it was a well written comment.

  13. Now I’ve got the “Greatest American Hero” theme song stuck in my head. Thanks for that. :-p

  14. And Mr. Katt (can’t recall his first name) who played the Greatest American Hero had a “Mark Fidrych” hair-do.

  15. I was also pretty angry when Tram was fired. It seems to me bringing him as a manager in ’03 was more of a PR move than a baseball move, if you know what I mean. Still, Tram is a Tiger for life and a class act through-and-through. I know he’s rooting for the Tigers.

  16. “Still, Tram is a Tiger for life and a class act through-and-through. I know he’s rooting for the Tigers.”

    Thanks for saying that, Anne. Cheered me up. Not that Tigers fans really should have anything to grumpy about these days…

  17. Bringing Tram in was totally a PR move, I’ve thought that all along. Dave Dombrowski saw what we had when he came in 2002, and knew it would take a year like 2003 to start a real rebuilding plan. Bringing in Tram, Gibby, and Lance Parrish to be coaches bought some time.

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