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All Things Michigan

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Filtering by Tag: Sparky Anderson

My five favorite Detroit Tigers home runs

Andrew Norton

This is my personal Top Five list of Detroit Tigers home runs. They might not all be famous, but they were chosen due to their significance to me and my lifelong love of the Tigers. Kirk Gibson, Game 5 of the 1984 World Series Growing up my favorite Tiger was Kirk Gibson. I thought he was awesome and that the Tigers would always be a good (if not great) team. Gibson left via free agency after the 1987 season (and go on to hit one of, if not, THE most definitive World Series home runs in 1988) and it would be nearly 20 years before Detroit would return to the postseason.

This happens to be my favorite moment of both Sparky Anderson and Kirk Gibson. "He don't wanna walk ya!"

The pivotal moment of Game Five in the 1984 World Series. Two on, one out, and the Tigers clinging to a 5-4 lead and trying to clinch their 4th championship.

Magglio Ordonez, Game 4 of the 2006 ALCS October 14, 2006 - 22 years to the day that the Tigers won the World Series in 1984, Magglio Ordonez stepped up to the plate in a 3-3 tie with a chance to send the Tigers to the World Series.

Bottom of the 9th, two on, two outs, and Magglio Ordonez took a 1-0 pitch into the stands in left field sending Tigers fans everywhere into boundless joy. I was a kid the last time the Tigers won the World Series and I felt like a kid (actually jumping and hollering as the ball was in flight) when Ordonez sent them back.

I still get chills watching this :).

September 27, 1999 - the last hit at Tiger Stadium Rob Fick gave the grand old ballpark a fitting farewell when he smacked a grand slam home run onto the right field roof.

Carlos Guillen exacts his revenge on Jered Weaver for being a jerk to his pal Magglio July 31, 2011 - this is extra special to me because my family was actually at this game. Justin Verlander was working a perfect game going into the 8th inning and I had butterflies in my stomach as we watched potential history being made.

Oh, and there was all kinds of other drama. In the fourth inning, Magglio Ordonez hit a two run home run that just went fair. He didn't leave the batter's box right away because he was watching to see if it would be fair or foul. Well, the Angels' pitcher, Jered Weaver, thought that Ordonez was showboating and screamed at him as Magglio trotted around the bases.

Carlos Guillen was really good friends with Ordonez and took exception to Jered treating his buddy like that so in the 7th inning when Guillen hit a no doubt home run to right field, he purposely showboated by flipping his bat and staring down Weaver. Alex Avila was the next batter and Weaver threw at his head in retaliation. He was quickly tossed from the game and then just lost it in one of the better on-field temper tantrums I have seen by a player.

The next inning, Verlander lost his perfect game and no-hitter, but I will always remember this game for all of the additional drama.

September 3, 2011 - Miguel Cabrera walk-off home run I can't have a list like this without including something from Miguel Cabrera. September 3, 2011 - the Tigers were down by 7 runs to the White Sox after the top of the 5th inning. They were still down 8-6 going into the 9th inning when Ryan Raburn hit a two run home run to tie it.

With two outs and the game still tied, the foolish White Sox chose to pitch to Cabrera with first base open. They would immediately regret the decision as Miggy took the first pitch he saw and parked it into the left field stands to end the game. Walk-off win!

Five Fun Things to do in Michigan This Weekend - 6/23 - 6/26/11

Andrew Norton

  1. Soo Locks Engineers Day - June 24th
  2. Detroit River Days - 6/23 - 6/26/11
  3. Michigan Challenge Balloonfest - 6/24 - 6/26/11
  4. Dairy Days at the Wellington Farm Park near Grayling - 6/25 - 6/26/11
  5. Comerica Park - June 26th before the 1:05 start - Detroit Tigers are retiring Sparky Anderson's Number 11 in a pregame ceremony. All fans will receive a commemorative canvas print.

Tigers to retire Sparky Anderson's Number 11

Andrew Norton

With two of his ex-players, Kirk Gibson and Allan Trammell, in town with the Arizona Diamonbacks - the Detroit Tigers will retire Sparky Anderson's Number 11 in a pre-game ceremony before the 1:05, June, 26th, start. This is a long overdue gesture and it's a shame that this couldn't have been done before Sparky's passing last year.

Sparky Anderson 1934 - 2010

Andrew Norton

God Bless you, Sparky. Tell Ernie, we all say 'hi'. Here is Sparky and some of the players from the great 1984 World Series Champions talking about what Sparky meant in their lives, not just what he meant to them in terms of baseball.

A great roundup of Sparky Anderson articles and tributes can be found over at