For the first time since 1987, the Detroit Tigers clinched a spot in the playoffs.
From the AP:
Detroit, which had the day off Monday, has wrapped up at least a wild- card spot. The Tigers also began the final week of the regular season with a 1 1/2-game lead over Minnesota in the AL Central. And they were a half-game ahead of the New York Yankees and Mets for baseball’s best record.
The Tigers (94-62) seem to have a good shot at maintaining their position during their upcoming homestand.
They begin a three-game series Tuesday night with Toronto before closing with a three-game set against the Royals, who own baseball’s worst record. Detroit is 2-1 against Toronto this season and 14-1 against Kansas City.
Reporters from around the country might make their way to Comerica Park this week, just as they did three years ago for a much different story.
Detroit won five of its last six games in 2003 _ their best six-game stretch of that embarrassing season _ to avoid the 1962 New York Mets’ modern-day record for losses. The Tigers still were saddled with an AL-record 119 losses and finished 47 games out of first place.
“It’s unbelievable that we’ve gone from being the worst team to get to where we are right now in just three years,” said third baseman Brandon Inge, one of 10 players still around from the infamous 2003 team.
Seconds after Inge marveled at the turnaround, he echoed Leyland’s comments.
“We’re very happy and excited about making the playoffs, but come Tuesday, it’s time to get to business because we’re not satisfied,” Inge said. “We want to win the division and we want to keep winning in the playoffs.”
Go get ’em Tigers!