I’m a firm believer in one of the “unwritten rules” of being a baseball fan. You root for your team and no other. Other baseball teams are the enemy and their fans are nothing more than filthy, disgusting, animals who should be treated as such. Some of my fellow bloggers break this rule and root for teams like the Rangers or Red Sox along with the Tigers and it makes me want to shake them like Britney Spears probably did her children.
Over at mLive today, I came across this piece by Matt Sussman suggesting that it’s okay for Tiger fans to also root for the Indians.
I can only assume that Matt wrote this piece at gunpoint from some crazed Racist Logo fan, so I’m going to cut him some slack since he seems like one of the decent folks writing over there.
But that’s not gonna stop me from piecing through this bad boy for y’all…
Matt starts off talking about stealing a school lunch back in the day. I’ll skip that part for you. Then we get to this.
I'm secretly kind of rooting for the Cleveland Indians to make the playoffs.
Part of me hopes that the entire point of this was to anger the trolls over at mLive. If that was his aim, I say, “good hustle”. It certainly seems to be working judging by the comments he’s getting.
But in case that’s not what’s up, I’ll continue with my two cents.
While sweating out the ninth inning of the Tigers' 3-1 victory over the Royals last night, the Blue Jays were trying to ice a 4-0 game in Cleveland.
As you may know by now, the bullpen couldn't lock it down and Travis Hafner blasted a game-winning grand slam for the 5-4 victory. That is so cool.
No it’s not. Because of this, the Tigers did not gain ground in the AL Central. As a Tiger fan, this should piss you off to no end. Especially since the homer came at the hands of suspected roid rager, and suspected (by me) killer of small animals, Travis Hafner.
Meanwhile, the Tigers were able to win in Kansas City thanks to home runs by Ryan Raburn and Don Kelly. This is astounding, fortunate, and unlikely.
/understatement of the year
But it's no Hafner grand slam. The Comerica Park parallel would be if Carlos Guillen hit a walkoff grand slam.
I was thinking Gary Sheffield. But whatever.
Also comparing homers by both a struggling Raburn AND an awful Kelly to one by the Indians cleanup hitter? Methinks you might have it backwards.
So, here's a proposal: let's root for the Tigers and the Indians simultaneously.
What's the harm?
Because I’m a Tiger fan. Rooting for the Tigers and Indians would be like rooting for both Jacob and Edward. DOESN’T COMPUTE.
I know it's a division opponent. But this isn't like rooting for the Twins or the White Sox.
It’s exactly like rooting for the Twins and White Sox. Just because they wear a different shirt with a racist logo on it doesn’t make them any less of a division rival.
The Twins are the Tigers' prime division rival and basically have been since 1987. The White Sox are just hard to enjoy on all fronts; the color scheme, the midseason swoons and A.J. Pierzynski. It's all too much.
Agreed. The bad blood there is a bit worse. But when I look at three murderers, and two of them happened to kill children, it doesn’t make me, all of the sudden, feel bad for the guy that murdered an elderly man instead of the toddler. They’re all horrible monsters in the end.
But Cleveland? They're Detroit's cousin.
I hate my cousins. That works for me.
What does that make Toledo? Bastard red-haired stepbrother with a hairlip?
Forget about the bitter Ohio-Michigan rivalry for a minute; that's relegated to college football fans who channel all their unrequited bigotry through the medium of student athletes who earn zero percent of that $50 general admission ticket.
I prefer to look at it like this. I cannot respect any person that gets so worked up over a SCHOOL that they were most likely too dumb to go to in the first place. College rivalries are ridiculous most of the team.
And they all cheat. Get off your current high horses, Michigan fans.
//blow me, haters
From Motown to the Cuyahoga, there is so much discernible overlap in the demographics, hardship and lake water they share.
Everyone’s suicidal. Agreed.
The one difference is sporting success.
Don’t attempt to make me feel bad for another city’s fan base. I fell for that shit in 2004 with Boston fans. And look what those people turned into.
Never again. Fuck Cleveland fans.
No Cleveland sports team has won a "Big Four" title since 1964. In that same time, there have been nine Detroit sports titles and multiples each for the Tigers, Red Wings and Pistons — all three of Detroit's pro sports teams. Should the city get a professional football team in the near future (and I hear they're close!) then I'll start counting them in the statistics.
Zing. Fuck the Lions. (Sorry, I’m a Bears fan.)
Tigers fans think they have it hard because, boo hoo, they haven't been able to get back to the World Series since 2006?
No, because they haven’t won one since 1984. One year before I started watching baseball. That sucks. So bitter about it.
Look at the resiliency of Clevelanders. They really believe any team in first place, come midseason, can really win it all.
Bullshit. You’ve never met a Cleveland fan, have you? They’re the most negative people on the planet.
They believed in 1995, because who would possibly expect Craig Counsell?
The Indians made the playoffs five consecutive years in the 90’s. They had guys like Albert Belle, Manny Ramirez, Jim Thome, Eddie Murray, Sandy Alomar, Roberto Alormar, and more on those teams and screwed it up every year.
I sat in Tiger Stadium and watched a bunch of bumblefucks screw up game after game in front of me. Excuse me if I don’t feel bad for the Indian fans.
They thought LeBron James was going to bring them a basketball title.
LeBron James is a pile of shit. Everyone in the world knew that except stupid Cleveland fans. Serves ‘em right.
The same goes for those Bernie Kosar-era Browns teams in the '80s.
Bernie threw underhand half the time. I’m amazed at how Cleveland fans worship him. He was awful.
And yet they're buying into this particular Indians team, picked to finish fourth or fifth in the American League Central by most fans and experts. They can believe in them, and so can we. The lunch counter should not be terrifying.
They do not. I live in Ohio. I personally know several Indians fans, including two of my best friends. I talked to one after Pronk’s walkoff and he was upset. He said he knows they’re not for real and wishes they’d just get it over with and start losing. All Indian fans are like this. They suck.
Don’t believe me? The majestic Hafner homer game? On a Thursday summer night, this first place Indians team drew a crowd of 18,816 for the game. By the time Pronk hit the ball out, I bet there were under 3,000 left in the stadium. Fuck those people. They don’t deserve a playoff berth again.
I'm not saying that we should abandon the Tigers, of course. That's the one you want up there if nothing else. But if the Indians keep winning, it places pressure on Detroit to maintain the pace. Competition breeds excellence.
Game 163 flashback! Ice cream headache! Ouch…screw competition.
Usually "faith in the other team's misfortune" doesn't make this happen.
Like don’t talk to the pitcher during a no-hitter? That’s all bullshit.
And nobody likes to see a division race where 85-or-fewer wins is enough.
I couldn’t give two tugs of a dead dog’s dick if we finish 62-100, as long as the second place team has 61 wins or less.
It's always a blast to see two teams push each other to at least 90 wins and contending for the Wild Card. Why not let it be the Indians and Tigers?
Because I’ve been a Tigers fan for too long. I’ve seen what happens in close division races the past few years. I think I’d be quite happy winning this division by 10 games or more if all the other teams tank, thank you.
If the AL Central sent two teams to the playoffs, it'd stop all the jokes about the division being weak, at least for a year.
A couple years ago, it was one of the best in baseball. Did that matter in the long run? Fuck and no, it didn’t. Let people make all the jokes they want, as long as we win a World Series.
Do you really think I care what a Yankee fan thinks?
Do Yankee fans think? That’s another column…
It would also keep alive all the jokes about the Twins, Royals and White Sox. Nobody can complain about that.
A Twins fan, a Royals fan, and a White Sox fan walk into a bar…never mind.
It may also set up a possible Tigers/Indians matchup in the American League Championship Series. And who would you rather see face the Tigers in the ALCS than the Indians?
Boston or New York. And sweep them. Also Chicago or Minnesota would be cool, too. Redemption.
They haven't won a championship in over 50 years.
Zing. I see what you did there. But no...no chance I'm rooting for anyone in this division unless they're playing whoever's immediately ahead or behind us in the standings. I've seen what this team tends to do in the second half.
Again, Matt, if you were just trying to rile up the comment section at mLive, I salute you.
But if you’re serious about rooting for both Detroit and Cleveland, I find you guilty of Section 1A of baseball fandom: Thou shall not root for teams other than your own, especially if they are a division rival.
Your punishment will be death by fire. Or worse yet…spend eternity living in Cleveland.