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Now on to something on the minds of Detroit Tiger fans everywhere. The one game playoff with the Twins tommorow night in the giant Hefty bag that is the Metrodome.
My first question is, how on earth did we get here? A month ago, we had a 7 game lead in the division. Last week we had a 3 game lead! I don't know that I have ever seen a team in any sport so un-motivated to make the post-season. So un-motivated to win the Tiger's first division title since the 1980's. So un-motivated to get back to the promised land and finish what they started in 2006. There was a recent article on ESPN.com about the Tiger players and coaches feeling a need to uplift the spirits of the people of Detroit and Michigan. I'm not so sure, usually teams that are truly driven by such divinity of spirit show much more desire. You have to have a give-a-damn, a fire in your eyes.
Want to see an inspiriring run to up-lift down-trodden hearts? Look no further than the 2008-'09 Michigan State Spartans run to the National Championship game in the very city of Detroit. Even with their slaughter at the end, they puched themselves to the limit. There was no lack of give-a-damn, and you could see it.
What am I trying to get to? I'm trying to say that the Tigers don't deserve the one-game playoff, let alone a trip to the post-season if they do happen to pull off a win in the deafening Hefty-bag for which they seem cursed in. I hate to say it, being a life-long Tiger fan, but the expectations they groomed and cultivated throughout the season were no where reminiscent of their current actions.
Let's however get some perspective in the midst of all this tension and frustration. If you're my age, and had even a mild interest in the Tigers as a kid, you can remember the dismal 90's. Being able to walk up to the Tiger Stadium box office window at game-time and buy a box-seat behind home for under $50. How about the early 2003. Remember 119 losses, and a Kansas City Royals team that actually had a winning record?
Back then, we would have KILLED to have a team that was merely competitive and not painful to watch. In 2003 to think that we would have the lead in the division for almost the whole season and would have a chance to go to the playoffs would have made us go nuts. 2006 Ruined our perspective, and the dissapointment of 2008 jaded us. So, if we lose tommorow night, and there is a big probability we will, feel free to be as dissapointed as the next fan. However, keep in mind that 2003 season when spewing hatred Wednesday morning around the water-cooler.
Humility, and remembering how far this organization has actually come is important.