The Tigers have given up on 2015. They've waved the white flag and packed it in. You can sugar coat it however you want, but that's the truth. The club has sold off three huge pieces for prospects and even drop kicked their long-tenured GM to the curb.
Are you going to pack it up for the year as well? If the Tigers don't think this is their year why should you bother paying attention?
Honestly things won't change much for me. When I see the Olde English D it's like staring into the eyes of Sir Hiss. Since I'm mesmerized by the uniforms and The Brand I might as well convince you to stay on board to. Misery loves company.
Here are the top 10 reasons to stick it out.
(the season...don't stick anything else out, please)
1. Getting to know players
I'm a sap for the soap opera stuff. Daniel Norris had a van! What an unorthodox dream boat! Will Ian Kinsler fight a man tonight!? Will Al Alburquerque kiss anything on the field?
There is a reason NBC spends 10 minutes before each 2 minute Olympic performance showing you the hometown and puppy of some no-name cross country skier. The human story is what makes people care (that and the little American flag by their name, of course)
2. Enjoying baseball for baseball's sake
Baseball is a beautiful game. The field is beautiful. The rhythms are beautiful. You can't watch a baseball game in a hurry. You need to adjust the pace of the sport. They say music is a painting built on the canvas of silence. Well baseball is a painting built on the canvas of standing around. Lots of standing around. But the standing around only makes you appreciate the whip of a violently delivered pitch or the little tornado that is a swing a miss. Speaking of beautiful...
3. Jose Iglesias' defense
Jose Iglesias can do things with a glove no human should be able to do. I think the closest parallel in sports is Lionel Messi with a soccer ball. There is an ease and a grace to what they are doing even in the midst of extreme urgency. It makes jaws (and panties) drop.
4. Background noise
It gets kinda quiet around the house with the TV off. How am I supposed to load the dishwasher in silence? It seems like you have a friend around with the dulcet tones of Mario or Dan piped in. Plus, how else would I know who to call if I get hurt in a motorcycle accident?
5. False hope
If there isn't hope for a World Series title this year there is a least false hope. We aren't mathematically eliminated from the playoffs. Sure, Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump aren't going to be the next president, but the possibility that they could be has everyone hanging on to them like lampreys.
6. Reduced ticket prices
Back in 2005 I went to White Sox game at the Cell and the place was packed. I missed the sea of available green seats and ample parking at Comerica. Turns out in the years to come CoPa would be jammed and the Cell would be a wasteland. Perhaps the end of 2015 will be your chance to hit StubHub, check out a game cheap, and have an entire section to yourself.
7. Each game is a competition unto itself
Can we beat the Royals in the American League Central Standings? No, we cannot. But we CAN whoop their ass on a particular night. I don't know about you, but it still feels satisfying defeat a rival, if only for 1/162nd of a season.
8. Promise of things to come
Sure, "wait 'til next year" is the lament of the loser, but there is some solace in looking ahead. See an awesome performance by a young player? Just thinking how good he'll be next year! See a stupid base-running error? "Oh, I'm sure they'll get that figured out next spring training" Works either way!
9. Drinking games
How else are you supposed to know how fast to slowly poison yourself? Thank you, Rod Allen!
10. Justifiable bitching
The only thing as fun as cheering about your team is bitching about them. The only problem is the Tigers have been pretty good over the last few years. But now you can rightly say they suck. Yell it from the mountain tops! "THEY SUCK!" Feels good doesn't it? And now it's more than self-deluded anger wallowing, it's actual truth. Hate the way Ausmus manages? You're in luck! They suck! Think the Tigers over-payed for Victor Martinez? Your contempt is rationalizable! They suck! Hard for people to shoot down even your most cockamamie criticism when the team does, in fact, suck. Enjoy it!