July 17th marked the 9th anniversary for this little old website. It has been a huge part of my life for nearly a decade which is what makes any decision to step away both a liberating and heartbreaking exercise.
I started to have these pangs in the offseason, and took some time away from the blog to sort things out. When the season started I gave it my all, but in the last couple months there just hasn’t been any passion on my part to go through the daily grind of maintaining the site on a regular basis.
I’ve been pressed for time lately, but I’ve been pressed for time before. I just always chose to make time for the blog in the past, but the energy just isn’t there anymore. My labor of love became purely labor and that is my primary reason for largely stepping aside. The first iteration of this post was titled “The End” and had me shutting down the site completely. I can’t bring myself to do it though so we’ll call it a semi-retirement. I will likely still post things on occasion, but it will be on my schedule and on topics that I want to explore. I’m not going to be beholden to the Tigers schedule or the baseball news cycle.
The future of the site is undetermined at this point, but it isn’t going away. “Kevin in Dallas” is going to start posting game threads for the time being. I greatly appreciate his willingness to step up and keep the community together. Beyond that we’ll play it by ear as I don’t want to over promise anything and certainly don’t want to speak for Kevin.
It has been a great ride and I’m thankful for so much. I’m proud of what this humble little website became and it has served as a tremendous growth experience for me. Over the years I think my analysis skills improved, my data mining skills developed, I learned about web development and servers and php and mysql and css and it even led to a web job.
Along the way I hope that I helped to advance the notion that a blog could be a credible source of information and analysis, and that I helped in some small way to dispel the notion that bloggers are guys working out of their parents basement. I tried to do this with a focus on being right, responsible, and respectful. I think I did okay on this front.
I had opportunities to write for real books. I had the chance to go in the Fox Sports production truck and to see batting practice from the field. I’ve been interviewed as a Tigers expert. I mingled with Hall of Famers at The Henry Ford, interviewed a Michigan treasure, and got to connect with so many class individuals associated with the Tigers organization. Not bad for a guy who started a website on a whim with no knowledge of web development.
Most importantly I had the opportunity through DTW to meet so many wonderful online friends. Whether it is my fellow Tigers bloggers and DIBS members, or other long time bloggers like Geoff Young or Seth Stohs, or those of you who took the time to comment or email, thanks so much for making this a fulfilling experience.
Thanks to all of you who came here on a regular basis. Thank you to those who donated money. Thank you to those who donated their time. I’m flattered and humbled that you made the site a part of your lives as well.
Thank you to Roger DeWitt and Wendy Smith who were responsible for so many of the pictures that appeared on this site, royalty free.
Thanks to everyone who told their friends about the site and invited them aboard. Thanks to all the bloggers and writers who have linked to my site or posts over the years.
Thanks to the Tigers organization who always treated me with respect and let me interview the CEO, President, and GM back when blog was still a dirty word.
Thanks to everyone who passed me information so that I could look smart a time or two.
Thank you to Dan Dickerson, Rod Allen, Curtis Granderson, Adam Wilk, James Robbins, Dave Dombrowski, and Ernie Harwell who were so gracious with their time.
Thank you to the mainstream media folks who helped promote the site. You helped make it relevant and credible.
Finally, thank you to Mrs. Billfer and the kids for all of your patience while “daddy needed to work on his dot com.” I love you guys.