Trying to drive home from a baseball game can cause ulcers and migraines to thousands of fans. The headache is exponentially compounded if the game was a sellout.
But when that capacity crowd watches an underdog team dominate the nation's most hated team? Why, you'll have yourself a mighty agreeable traffic jam.
That's what I experienced as I drove 60 inches per hour out of Detroit Saturday night after the Detroit Tigers beat the New York Yankees 8-3. The win eliminated the critically-acclaimed Yankees from the playoffs and vaulted the once-hapless Tigers to the American League Championship Series.
Can you blame them? They saw Jeremy Bonderman pitch 8 1/3 innings, allowing just two runs and retiring the first 15 batters. They saw Magglio Ordonez's second-inning solo home run, followed by Craig Monroe's 2-run homer in the same inning.
They saw Yankee starting pitcher Jaret Wright leave the game in the third inning after allowing his fourth run. And they saw that lead continue to grow to 8-0 by the sixth inning.
No wonder the crowd didn't want the traffic jam to end.
Michigan Driver No. 1: "Go ahead in front of me."
Michigan Driver No. 2: "No, you go ahead. I insist."
Michigan Driver No. 1: "Well, thank you!"
Michigan Driver No. 2: "You're welcome. GO TIGERS!"
Michigan Driver No. 1: "WOOOO!"
Rest of Traffic: "WOOOOO!" [Honk honk]
Few well-paid analysts picked the Tigers to win this series after losing the final five games of the season to the Toronto Blue Jays and Kansas City Royals. Wait, did I say few? I meant nobody. Nobody important, that is. But I seem to recall one person actually saying the Tigers in 4, which broke a streak of eight straight series he incorrectly predicted.
Okay, nobody likes a gloater. But the folks in the traffic jam didn't seem to mind.
While the celebration in Michigan will last all weekend, Tuesday will send Detroit westward for their first game of the ALCS against the Oakland A's. The A's swept the Minnesota Twins, a formidable team that snuck up behind the Tigers in the regular season and snatched away the AL Central division crown on the final game of the season. Much like the Tigers, the A's pitching staff is extremely deep, including starters and relievers, but their lineup is vastly different. While the Tigers have nine equally potent hitters, Oakland's lineup features more patience, less power, and one big bat: Frank Thomas.
In-house analyst John Kruk picked the Tigers in seven games. Like moths to a flame, Tino Martinez and Eduardo Perez also picked the Tigers. Host
Karl Ravech Scott Reiss humorously reminded his wingmen how many of them picked the Tigers to win the first round.
So screw you, BBTN crew, for jumping back on the Tigers' bandwagon after abandoning it a week ago. Naw, just kidding. And to prove I'm not actually mad, I'll wave you in front of me once the light turns green.Powered by Sidelines