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Tigers to open 2011 season in New York: Schedule announced

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Good news out-of-state Tigers fans! You almost certainly will get the Tigers' season-opener on a standard cable station. That's because Detroit visits the Bronx to meet the Yankees on Thursday(!), March 31, 2011. Yes, you read that right. Thursday. This season the MLB will begin games a few days earlier than the normal Monday opening. That means the regular season will be ending a few days earlier this year: Sept. 28 at home against the Indians to be more exact. The move was made to try to keep baseball out of November, where it really ought not to be.

So now you know the alpha and the omega, what about the 156 games in the middle? Here's a quick preview:

The home opener is scheduled for April 8 against the Royals, a 1:05 p.m. start. Get used to the afternoon starts: every game in Detroit except two during the month of April will begin in the afternoon. They'll also head out west after that for a seven-day road trip. So again, April will not be the most working-person friendly month of Tigers baseball, though it does appear to be an improvement over this season's schedule.

The longest home stay of the year begins May 23. Tampa, Boston and Minnesota will all come to town for a total of 10 games in 10 nights.

The interleague schedule: At Pittsburgh in May, then a dally with the NL West in June. They'll be at Colorado and Los Angeles, and hosting Arizona, the Mets and the Giants.

The All-Star Break is the 11th through the 14th, with the game scheduled for the 12th in Arizona.

One of the longest road trips of the year doesn't appear like it will be a too tough: August 5-14 at KC, Cleveland and Baltimore. Tougher will be later in the month, a seven-get trip to Tampa and Minnesota.

The Tigers will have to show a lot of improvement on the road next year, and if they want to win the division they'll probably need a few games in hand before they get to September. They'll be at Chicago, Oakland and Kansas City for another 10-day trip. The Tigers will finish with a final week at home against Baltimore and Cleveland.

Other than the long road trip in September, I don't think there's anything too bad to complain about. Obviously you never know exactly how the contenders and pretenders will shake out when the season is still months away, but the schedule looks pretty balanced next year. So that's good.

Here's a link to April 2011, you can look around yourself. What do you think it? Anything you noticed that I didn't?

Partha shared his thoughts in a FanPost.