ALDS Games 1 and 2

illustrations by Samara Pearlstein

You all know this story already. The Tigers attempted to kill us all on Sunday. They played as ridiculous a game as they could possibly play. It came down to the very last at-bats of the very last inning. With one out and the bases loaded, the big cats already stashed safely on first and second, Don Kelly came up. And what did he do?

He did not hit a towering grand slam of a home run into the center field foliage. He did not ground into a double play. He did no more and no less than what he absolutely needed to do, which was simply hit a ball far enough to score the cat on third. Not flashy. Not dramatic. Just Don Kelly– just baseball.

Also this happened: for those two of you who somehow didn’t see it/haven’t heard about it yet, AlAl fielded a huge out, and kissed the ball before tossing it to first. Was it a little hot-dog-ish? Sure. Was it a little rude? Sure. Was it premeditated? Absolutely not. Was it hilarious and sort of endearing? You bet your tiger-striped tail it was.

I know the A’s are all surly about it, but quite frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.

Game 1 was nice too.

Now, given the way the Tigers played going into the postseason, I had low expectations. I honestly had a hard time envisioning them making it out of the first round. Yet here we are, up 2-0, needing to win just one more game out of the coming three. Of course, all three are in Oakland, and it is not at all out of the realm of possibility for the Tigers to completely muck that up, especially as Verlander and Mister Fister have already pitched, and as we all know, things get a bit thin behind them in the rotation. But this is already so much better than I had dared to dream.

I mean, Don Kelly, you guys. The Tigers are heading west in this best of all possible positions thanks to Don Kelly. Roll that one around in your mind for a while.

7 responses to “ALDS Games 1 and 2

  1. I had an excellent feeling about this weekend’s games. I was in Joliet, IL to attend a wedding and while walking back to the hotel after setting up for the reception, I found a PRAYING MANTIS on the sidewalk! Photographed it, sent it to my sister with the message, We’re In! Hope it continues.

  2. I knew Donnie could do it! However, that game was (depending on how you look at it) either a great back-and-forth ballgame with lots of drama and excitement – or – an exercise in two teams desperately giving the other side every chance they could to win. Since we did wind up on top, I’m okay with that… just so long as we realize that is probably not an effective way to win the World Series.

    (Another thing I am okay with since it worked out, was Al’s little stunt. If he had somehow screwed up that out, though, I think I would have been screaming and banging my head on the wall.)

  3. Verlander and Mister Fister have already pitched

    Verlander will be available on normal rest for Game 5 if necesary

  4. I give Al the benefit of the doubt. I interpreted the kiss as genuine relief that he had gotten out of a scary situation.

  5. Was anybody else nervous something bizarre would happen on that last play? A few things that crossed my mind were Omar leaving early, Omar trotting home and getting caught off-guard by a perfect throw and Kelly passing Fielder on the basepaths before Omar crossed home. That was just the panicky Detroit fan in me (too many years as a Lions fan, I suppose). Most of me was celebrating as soon as the ball left Kelly’s bat.

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