what to do in the ALDS

illustrations by Samara Pearlstein

Win, but terrify everyone first.

It is difficult to discuss these last two games in any coherent way. We survived them, obviously, but now when I try to force my brain in that direction, it just starts gibbering and screaming nonwords into my skull. First there was the ASFDGLIJA; and then there was the GGGLARLIASLDFJK and then they all ASDL;KFJAS;DLKFJSWS!!!

It all started with the rainout, which was continued with the incredibly painful loss. Then Max Scherzer pitched so well for 6 innings, and the bullpen VERY NEARLY lost it, and Papa Grande threw ALL THE PITCHES but somehow the Tigers scraped through.

The game was briefly and horrifyingly prolonged when Alex Avila, pursuing a foul ball that should have been the last out of the game, slipped on the stupid Yankee Stadium on deck circle patch and fell down, missing the ball. Unlike Comerica or, say, Fenway Park– CIVILIZED ballparks– the on deck circles in New York are these rubbery Yankee logo’d things. When it rains, they get slick. Then they become HAZARDS and DANGERS and they should be BANNED because the Yankees are FILTHY BALLPARK CHEATERS.

Anyways, the Tigers got out of that one, but it should not have been quite so drama-laden. Death to the Yankee Stadium on deck circles. AS IF ALEX AVILA HAS NOT HAD TO DEAL WITH ENOUGH THIS SEASON.

Tonight Verlander was not at his sharpest (neither was Sabathia, who gave up the same number of runs but lasted only 5.1 innings to Verlander’s 8. Rain situations like the one that started this series ruin everything for everyone). The Yankees tied the game up in the top of the 7th. The crowd was stunned, appalled, filled with a sense of foreboding and dread.

But Delmon Young stepped up in the bottom of the inning and hit a ball over the wall, all YAY DETROIT and TAKE THAT YANKEES ON BEHALF OF MY TWINKIE SERVICE. If you were watching, you know what it was like. If you were not, I cannot describe to you the sense of relief this home run generated. The game was not yet over, but to get the lead back after everything had seemed to be slipping irrevocably away… holy cats.

And then there was Papa Grande, tired out after those many, many pitches in the previous night’s efforts. He threw a ball that almost murdered Derek Jeter in the head, but he recovered for the save and the Tigers win. He did not do much of a dance, but he did make a fancy upward motion with his arms that gestured to the sky and pulled his jersey out of his pants at the same time.

This is what I have been like while watching the games:

FredFred tomorrow. No matter what happens, remember: he’s still just a kitten. Be nice to him. Go Tigers.

18 responses to “what to do in the ALDS

  1. Holy cats, the agonizing awesomeness just won’t stop! And why should it? Like the man says, “We live for this” –at least until it kills us. Somewhere Todd Jones is giggling.
    But between heart attacks: a strange, un-Detroit-fan-like calm. With each crisis we survive, the sense of destiny glows brighter through the nerve-wracking dread. Ballpark quirks, disaster scenarios, jinx-mongering TBS announcers, even the very elements have conspired against us –yet we endure, while pinstriped arrogance begins to tremble. Miraculous deliverance is becoming so familiar we’re almost starting to expect it. I think this is what they call “confidence.” We’re good at baseball, we deserve it, they’re evil– so why not?
    At this point the only thing that could surprise me would be no surprises. So surprise us, boys, with a nice, blood-pressure-friendly blowout today, so we can all rest up for the next roller coaster ride.

    Also: Gotta love on that TC of the little Yankettes skittering away from Max’s bi-colored laser-beams, Flee, imps, flee!

  2. Let’s just finish off theYanks tonight. I need my sleep.

  3. When Avila slipped and the way the inning was going I was thinking the Tigers Metrodome curse has come to Yankee Stadium.

  4. Delmon Young, Ramon Santiago, Brandon Inge. I love this team and how different players step up to get the job done every game. A lot of people give Jim Leyland crap about his frequent lineup changes, but the man knows what he’s doing: he has the entire team ready to play.

  5. Sam reaction shots: yeah, that’s about the same way we felt here.

    After listening to the TBS announcers root for the Yankees for two games, we turned the sound down and treated ourselves to Dan Dickerson and Jim Price on the tinny Grundig radio. The only problem was that the radio was a bit ahead of the Tivo-delayed TV pic, so it was a bit uncanny hearing each action announced about a quarter-second before we saw it with our eyes.

    • At one point as CC was walking off the mound after the Tigers scored but left some guys on, the TBS announcer actually said “It could have been worse.” We waited for at least a polite “…for CC and the Yankees,” but nope, full stop.

    • I don’t have cable and live in White Sox territory anyways, so I usually listen to Dan Dickerson and Jim Price on the Internet. When I do catch the game on TV I am always disappointed in the lack of information and insight from the TV announcers (also I oftentimes have to suffer with Hawk Harrelson, but that’s another story).

    • I had to do the same thing. We purchased 2 new radios just for the occasion. Thank God for Dan and Jim………………… I can’t get enough of “Batting Thurrrrrrrrd “……….and ” He GOT ‘IM on strikes “………………

  6. I’ll be at game 4 tonight! Can’t wait! FredFred, don’t fail us now. I hope the big boys have him pumped up…

  7. OMGOMGOMGOMG I WAS THERE LAST NIGHT. It was my first Tiger playoff game and I was in the bleachers by the scoreboard three rows behind the Yankee bullpen so I could hear all the taunting. IT WAS INCREDIBLE!

    I need to write an essay or something. I have never been so pumped in my life.

  8. I’m glad I’m not the only one having trouble putting all this into words. But I’ll try:

    After Friday night, I was just *blah* but then came Sunday and Max. And the Yankees had an inning or two when they had to bat in the pouring down rain when they couldn’t see the ball, too. And that made me feel better. But then Alex almost died.

    But then came Papa Grande… who did not.

    But then came Verlander… But then came P.G. again. And I guess it should be okay to *almost* murder Derek Jeter, as long as you don’t actually do it and it doesn’t load the bases for Grandy (oh, Curtis, how we once loved you. Why do you keep hurting us?) or something like that.

    And then *Big Sigh of Relief* it was over and I hadn’t keeled over from the stress. And we’re up 2 games to 1, so life is good.

  9. why did it take me so long to find this here webberblog

  10. That Scherzer leadoff cartoon kills me dead. Who are the Yankees in that one?

  11. That stupid on deck circle it shouldn’t be there I mean no one stands there no body! and oh now AJ starts to be good well i’ve had enough of these DAMN YANKEES!

  12. i like the shirt

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