A year ago, when Metro Detroit and Michigan at large were dealing with a careening auto industry and an economy crashing against the rocks, Detroit's baseball team seemed to believe misery required company.
The Tigers were finishing last in the American League Central with a 74-88 record, which meant that Comerica Park's final game-dates were more like funereal farewells to the departed.
Next week will be different, very different.
Beginning tonight in Chicago, where the first-place Tigers open a three-game series against the White Sox, Detroit begins a 10-game rush to win the American League Central title and grab a playoff spot. Detroit's final seven regular-season games are set for Comerica Park next week against second-place Minnesota (four games, Monday-Thursday) and a grand finale, three-game series against Chicago. The Tigers increased their lead to 3 with Thursday's victory over the Indians.