What a night

Blog Kenny was outstanding tonight. I told some of the guys, sitting there with Bonderman and Verlander, I looked over and said we could be looking at one of the best pitching performances in Detroit playoff history right here. I’m sure it matches up with a lot of the great performances they’ve had in the past, especially against that team, that lineup. There ain’t many teams in the history of the game, there ain’t many times when they’ve gone through a lineup like that in a playoff game.

That lineup is loaded, top to bottom. And what Kenny was able to do to get them to start swinging at balls out of the zone, he was attacking and getting ahead. But with what he has, he had to be able to still make a pitch and not make it to where it’s something that they can handle. I mean, on TV, when they put up the strike zone graphic, his pitches were on the line to just outside of it every time with two strikes. It was unbelievable, commanding pitches like that throughout 7 2/3 innings. To be able to do that in a game like that, well, it’s inspiring. That’s what this is all about.

It’s hard to believe it’s his first postseason win with over 200 wins in the big leagues and the credentials that he’s had. I mean, I’d take his career and quit with those numbers. Something keeps him going. I’ll tell you what, if he keeps on doing that, he’ll find himself getting another two- or three-year extension here in Detroit. He won’t have a problem finding another two or three years if he wants it.

The funny thing is here he is, 41 years old, and he ain’t showing signs of slowing down. And the style of pitcher that he is, it’s almost like he could just do it for five, six, seven years. It’s strenuous to go out and pitch and all that, but the only taxing he does is when he beats himself up for PFPs and things like that. He can make a game look that easy, and it’s not. You watch my game the other night, I’m fighting through my whole thing and I’m battling all the way through, and there’s seven runs on the board. He went scoreless for 7 2/3. It’s an amazing performance, and hopefully it’s something that we build from, take into tomorrow and see what happens. This could just be something special.

In the sports world, I don’t care who’s out there, who would think that we could be doing this? Especially what we talked about coming into this series, there were a lot of questions about how we’d respond and this and that. From Game 1, every player that has performed on this team, on that field, has left it out there. Every one of us has left it out there. We lost a game, but we were in it, then we come back and win two really good ballgames.

We’ve always talked about starting pitching keeping them in there. We did that just enough yesterday, and today he was commanding from the get-go. They hit a couple balls hard, but that’s the thing about performances like tonight. If you can get a couple balls that are squared up hit right at somebody where there’s a play made, it’s a momentum-changer. Maybe a guy hits a little knubber and it goes into a hit, or maybe a guy finds a hole, and then it starts something. You don’t anything starting with this lineup over there. Once they get it going, they get rolling. Every time they seemed like they tried to get something rolling, he shut the door. He turned into a strikeout pitcher. I mean, he punched out eight guys. That’s big time. That’s a special pitcher there. I told him after the game, honest to God, I used to watch Tom Glavine growing up and I’m sad that Kenny was never a part of the Braves to get on TBS so I could watch him. Because I admire the way he goes out there and how much of a professional he is and how much he has invited each and every one of us into his life. He’s very open and a heckuva teammate, kind of a big brother.

As for Gum Time, I was throwing packs up to the fans in the stands. A couple of them were calling the innings for the rallies, so I had to give them some props for that.

It was really fun, a really fun night. We’ve all enjoyed it. Man, that was awesome. That is the atmosphere you dream about playing in front of and being a part of. It was different. This fan base tonight was different from this season. There was a different emotion. There was a different feel. There was a buzz that wasn’t present in the past. Not saying that there wasn’t a buzz, but it was certainly a different type of feel. Even the faithful out there, I think we made even more faithful. Some of the most faithful Tiger fans out there, I think we’ve expanded that area tonight. I think last weekend is way out of their minds. We’re in a position to do something really special, but we’ve got a lot of work to do. It’s not going to be easy.

25 Comments

Nate, you dedicated blogger, you! This one made me a little misty-eyed. You guys are incredible. I am so excited for tomorrow. Go get ’em, Tigers!

You said this yesterday –

I hope we get a big reception in Detroit.If they can deal with that, I’m sure we’ll have a very good reception. The biggest thing for our fans following back home is that this gives them a little spark, something to feed off of.

Was it everything you hoped for? I watched from a bar in St. Louis and couldnt hear the crowd, but I could see it – was it sparked you hoped for, did that give the big push?

[I told some of the guys, sitting there with Bonderman and Verlander, I looked over and said we could be looking at one of the best pitching performances in Detroit playoff history right here.]

I definitely got that feeling as the game went on. Kenny was absolutely magical. And his post-game comments made me choke up a little.

We might be privy to witnessing baseball history tomorrow. I can’t wait.

Love you guys. Thanks for this special season.

Alexandra S.

Nate,

I love reading your blog! It’s awesome. Watching the game tonight was really special. I wish I could make it up to Detroit to see you guys in person. I would love to take my dad too. He’s the reason I love the Tigers so much.

Your blog makes the game more personal. The Tigers have always been special to me and now I have a special insite into what goes on in your mind.

Kenny was amazing tonight! I hope you guys keep up the good work! I’ll be watching you on tv in NC!

Love you guys! Thanks for everything!

-Em

Oh wow.

Kenny was amazing tonite.

I was there. It was so fun watching you guys beat the Yankees like that. Ohhh i have been waiting to watch that game for a looooong time. It was sooo great i cant even explain it! The atmosphere there tonite was incredible. Us Tiger fans have been waiting for a game like tonite. I have never gotten so many high fives from totally random people in my life. haha.

Well keep it up boys, i wish i could be there again tomorrow.

But make it to the world series and i will be there but we spent so much ******* money on these tickets for tonites game that my mom wont let me go to another playoff game unless you guys go to the world series.

I would really like to come back to Comerica one more time this year! Make it happen for us Tiger fans.

Your #1 fan Nate,

Payton

So many fans are so proud of your team, Nate. Kenny did great and your fans really showed up…if they were half as loud as they sounded on television, they really did their jobs!

One more to go – best of luck!

I have been raised a Tiger Fan by my Grandma and a Yankee fan by my Grandpa and My Mom whom just loves everyone..and when you guys had to face the Yanks in the first round I was like a series I didn’t know how to feel about. Then game 1 happened and it hit me watchin my 10yr old and 8 yr old ( whom usually would pull for the yanks ) say screw the yanks the Tigers derserve this more then anyone. We have brought them down to Tigers games there whole life they got a chance to get your autograph and u actually took the time to talk to them for a min. I thought they were gonna freak ..Thankyou so much for that…so anyways last night me and my Ten yr old r sitting and watching the game and I told him he was watching something speacial.Kenny was pitching outside of himself.. To watch anyone man-handle that line-up in a playoff game was absolutley the BEST game ever pitched in a post season. I have never saw anything like that reg season or post he just worked the hitters like no body’s business. I was 10 again tears in my eye’s watchin the Tigers win the World Series. Ty for the Great Yr and Great post season appearence. Good Luck Tonight and Tell Bonderman to just have fun with it, stay loose and be the pitcher he has been all yr :-)Thanks again Nate.. Arnold of Port Huron Mi

THAT is why I love baseball so much! I have followed the Tigers since my Grandfather took me to spring training in 1978. I was 6. I laugh when people say that baseball is too slow. The anticipation and building of excitement like last night… unbelievable. How can that not get you going?

Nate – Get ready for Game 1 against Oakland. Bondo’s got tonight. Thanks for all the excitement this year.

Hoop

Nate, man I have been a Tigers fan my whole life, I was born in 87 the last time they went to a playoff series and so this is the first time I actually get to see you guys in the playoffs. This season has been a thrill for me and my family who are all die hard tigers fans, we have enjoyed the season and especially the post season and now the only thing left on my agenda is to make it to one tigers game in my lifetime, I get really excited watching you guys on TV, I wouldnt know what to do if I watched a tigers game in real life. But thanks tigers for the great season, it truly has been something special for all the players and especially the die hard detroit fans, we are all proud and good luck tonight GO GET EM TIGERS!!!!

Kenny Rogers put on a pitching clinic. After all the troubles he has had with this team and he comes through in the biggest way. I am sure with every out his adrenaline just kept rising. That low and away pitch on those left handers was devistating. Kudos to the offense, as much as I love the Long ball, base hitting them is more impresive. Keep the head on straight and GO TIGERS.

Thank you for taking time from your life to write this BLOG. I think it is great in this day and age of people to busy to care. Thanks again THE “STADIUM GUY”

Unbelievable. THAT is what makes baseball so special. What a magical night, every pitch was electric. I have loved the blog, it kind of brought everyone a little more insight to the game and this special, special season. Unbelievable. Go get em Tigers.

Thanks again.

KennyMac

I am so thrilled Nate!! What a game! I had to watch on TV and it was spectacular! I’ve been a Tiger fan since the day I was born . My kids and I come to the ballpark every year. Even when the Tigers were the worst team in baseball, we were there. We are always faithful, good or bad, thick and thin. It’s great to be here now! My family has since moved 600 miles away from Detroit but we are as faithful as ever. I’m sure you can hear us screaming and cheering for you guys from 600 miles away!!!! You guys rock and it’s so fun to be a part of this now!

Always a Tiger fan!!!!

NATE! Awesome! I love that you are keeping us so up-to-date! Tonight the city is going to be CRAZY!!!!!!!!! I can’t wait to go to work at Hockeytown! The atmosphere is going to be INSANE!!!!!!

If you need some extra gum, we’ll be your hook-up! Stop by anytime! Haha!

Thanks again!!!!!!!!

❤ Erica

Great game last night! The crowd was wild and had their towels. My parents and I watched like we usually do, and My mom was proud. Dad was amazed, and I was happy and getting loud at the TV. Keep the momentum up tonight!!

Nate and the rest of the Tig’s…

Last night was huge! I came home from work just before the game started and my 4 year old boy was wearing his Tiger uni and ready to watch the game. I used to wear a full uniform EVERY time the Tigers were on TV (30+ years ago!)…

Knock the Yankees out today so I can text a friend that is a BIG Yankees fan with the follwing text—

DETROIT TIGERS, 3 GAMES….THE “BEST LINE-UP IN THE HISTORY OF THE GAME”, 1 GAME!!!

It takes a team to win a title, and that team had better have some pitching…

Dan in Wichita

Wow.
I mean, WOW!

That game was so beautiful. I’m not ashamed to say I was crying by the fifth inning, it was so beautiful.

Everyone played perfectly.

Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful.

Let’s have another great game today.

You guys are beautiful.

Floatykeith in Taipei.

Hey Nate,

I’ve been a Tigers fan for many years and this has been a great year, but last night was so exciting I could hardly contain myself. In fact, I yelled myself hoarse and I was watching the game by myself. All my thoughts and prayers will be with you guys today. Go get those Yankees!!!!!

Hiya Nate & Tigers!!! I enjoyed every moment of the game!!! Wow!! Thanks for keeping us informed of what is happening up there. My son, who happens to be autistic is telling me that Tigers will win!!!

Keep it up Nate, and Good Luck the rest of the way!!! PLEASE MAKE THIS YEAR THE TIGERS YEAR!!!! GO TIGERS, LETS HEAR YOU ROARRRRRRRRRRRRR

FROM PUERTO RICO WITH LOVE!!!

Nate,
I love the Major League chew rally motivator, its great to see a bunch of you guys doing it. You guys have given a lot of thrills to the city and the burbs. Im confident you will finish the job. I know it is way before your time but in the words of sportcaster Al Ackerman……..”BLESS YOU BOYS” Keep it up and we will see you at the parade

All I can say is awesome. There is no on person on this team..Its all of you rooting each others on. Lets go Tigers ..Lets GO!!

I was thrilled to get a call from my dad that morning saying he was invited to go and the guy had an extra ticket. It was an absolutely amazing night and was glad to be a part of it. Kenny was awesome and hopefully shut some people up. You guys are the real deal and deserve to be where you are and as a fan I thnk you for such a fun summer!

Dear Nate……….Please win this game tomorrow, I am begging you, I have been a longtime tiger fan and I need this so bad!!!!!!! So please stay focused and bring your game on, watch out for Thomas hes the best hittewr on the team, as I see it, U are my sons idol and my son is a high school pitcher, hes learned alot from you, and we will be watching this game together(he will be with me instead of his girlfriend tomorrow nite,watching the game, she hates sports LOL) Please nate I will be praying tonight on my hands and knees that you will win this game for us tomorrow(or at least pitch a good game for us) I have faith in you, god bless you!!!!!!!!! I LOVE YOU NATE!!!!!!!!!!!!!! LOVE MARION LEMIRE xoxoxox

Thank you so much for some awesome pitching the other nite (oct. 11th) I can not express to you how great you pitched in that game!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! thank you thank you thank you!!!!!!!! GOOOOOO TIGERS!!! P.S. Please dress very warm tomorrow, its gonna be cold!!!

What a touching homage to Kenny. I hope he’s had a chance to read this.

Kenny seems like he’s “home” in Detroit. I hope he chooses to finish his career with the Tigers.

p.s., I live in NYC and have been donning my Tiger gear for the last several months. I love the reactions from the locals. It went from snickering comments to something along the lines of fear. ha.

I would like to congrtaulate the Tigers for a great season. Unfortunately the Cardinals are going to win the series in the STL. Don’t feel bad, but if you can’t beat Reyes (Rookie) pitcher and you El Hombre (Albert Pujols) MVP beat you that will be an uphill battle. If the Tigers loos tonight to Jeff Weaver then games 3 & 4 will be Carpenter (Cy Young) and Suppan it may be time for the brooms to come out and call it a sweep. But ofcourse my hats off to a great team and great season the Tigers had. You need to remember the Cardinals have been to the playoffs and the big show in recent years advantage goes to the birds on the bat. But even after the Cardinals are crowned World Series Champs, keep your heads up in Detroit for the outstanding year of baseball.

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