Tigers are in! One of you has to be pretty happy about that.
As we dressed for my brother’s wedding on Friday, he couldn’t stop sweating. Part of it was the uncommonly hot October in Michigan. And obviously a big part of it was the fact that he was getting married in just a couple hours. However, as we relived the previous night’s Tigers’ game while getting ready (you know, the one where the Tigers beat the Yankees in a Game 5 for the ages), he mentioned how he had been sweating just as much during the final third of the game and that his heart had been pounding just as hard. This, from a man getting married in three hours.
I couldn’t blame him, though. I spent the better part of the seventh and eighth innings looking away on every pitch out of fear that I might jinx things. And when Benoit walked in a run with the bases loaded, I was sure my worst dreams were about to come true. Sure, he got out of it but things didn’t get any better when Valverde faced A-Rod with two outs in the ninth. It seemed like one of those legendary Yankee moments where a maligned slugger breaks out of his slump and sends a fastball into the upper deck.
But not this time. Instead, Valverde danced because mighty A-Rod had struck out. And I finally breathed. I took a second, composed myself and walked down the hall in the hotel to knock on the door of my parents’ room. My dad fumbled with the chain but when he finally opened the door, we both had these stupid grins on our faces.
The Tigers may have dropped the first game at Texas last night and Verlander may not have been his usual stellar self but that stupid grin hasn’t gone away. I want the Tigers to beat the Rangers. I want them to go on and win the World Series. But knocking the Yankees out of the playoffs? That’s going to feel pretty good for awhile. Yeah, I guess you could say I’m pretty happy about that.