Author Archives: ballparkman1955

Al Kaline’s legacy will last forever in Detroit

The news of Al Kaline’s death felt like an electric shock. He was my youth. By the time I started following the Tigers, Kaline was an established star. He had won the American League batting championship in 1955, the year … Continue reading

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Jarrod Patterson, who died earlier in March, had a few highlights in short time with the Tigers

It is strange how baseball works sometimes. In his ninth season of professional baseball, Jarrod Patterson had to accept a demotion to put himself in a position for the biggest promotion of his career. Prior to the 2001 season, Patterson … Continue reading

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Deacon McGuire spent three of his 26 major-league seasons with the Tigers, but he spent his later years in Albion and is buried there

Across from the Kalamazoo River in Riverside Cemetery in Albion, a headstone features two baseball bats and a baseball. It is the resting place of one of the most prominent catchers around the turn of the century – the 20th … Continue reading

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Kirk Gibson’s home run in Game 5 of the 1984 World Series leads the list of top 10 iconic home runs of all time for the Detroit Tigers

Even in this day of home runs coming at a more frequent rate, when one comes at the right time, it can be shocking and electrifying to fans of the hitter’s team and a dagger to the heart for fans … Continue reading

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A throwback to 1999 when Tigers legend Al Kaline was the subject of a question-and-answer interview

When I worked at The Jackson Citizen Patriot, I wrote a column called 2 ½ minutes. That’s how long it normally took to read it. The column was a question-and-answer format with a topical sports personality. Just days before the … Continue reading

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Second baseman Charlie Gehringer leads mythical all-time Tigers team made up of players born in Michigan

In the 120-year history of the Detroit Tigers in the major leagues, 104 of the 1,701 players were born in Michigan. So, what would an all-time Tigers team made up of players born in Michigan look like? It was a … Continue reading

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Curtis Granderson might have been a better player than Lou Brock, but Granderson doesn’t deserve the Hall of Fame

A few months ago, a baseball fan on Facebook complained that the stat, WAR, was flawed because it could not tell the difference between Lou Brock and Curtis Granderson. I believe that supports WAR as a legitimate statistic. Granderson, who … Continue reading

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Cesar Gutierrez and his .218 batting average went 7-for-7 on a Sunday afternoon in Cleveland to become a part of Tigers lore

There were many home-run heroes for the Tigers in their 9-8 victory over the Cleveland Indians in the second game of a doubleheader on June 21, 1970, at Cleveland Stadium. Jim Northrup hit two home runs and had five RBIs. … Continue reading

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Beiker Graterol remains the only Tigers pitcher to appear in just one game for Detroit and give up more than two home runs

Beiker Graterol might have drawn the toughest assignment for a major-league debut in Tigers history. After Bryce Florie went on the disabled list, the Tigers turned to Graterol, a 24-year-old right-hander from Venezuela, to start against the defending World Series … Continue reading

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Alan Trammell’s ‘ultimate grand slam’ against the Yankees in 1988 was still unforgettable to him 26 years later

There has never been an “ultimate grand slam” that wasn’t thrilling. What’s an “ultimate grand slam.” It is a grand slam hit with a team behind by three runs and in a walk-off situation. And for the first time in … Continue reading

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