Day 1: E-ville to Detroit
I had a lot of dates but I decided to stay home and dye my eyebrows.
You can observe a lot by just watching.
Pics: Hotel, fitness center (stand-in for THB on the elliptical), the non-souped-up toilet
DB hits the jackpot, gets upgraded to first class on both flights. Afterwards, we agree that I ate better since I had the Braeburn apple, goat cheese and Arizmendi rolls and she got served an airplane meal, and on the second flight she got zero food (45 minutes from Chicago to Detroit, no food OR drink service).
United does auto upgrades, you don’t even have to ask. Guess the million mile clubbers aren’t flying on the Sunday of three day weekends, so us 100k flyers have a shot.
It’s hot here, can’t wait to sit out at the ballpark on a Monday afternoon.
Day 2: E-ville to Detroit
I'm the type who'd be happy not going anywhere as long as I was sure I knew exactly what was happening at the places I wasn't going to.
If people don't want to come out to the ball park, nobody's gonna stop 'em.
Pics: Views from around the park, including DB and sushi-do, two DIFFERENT shots of the scoreboard (ok, same shot taken hours apart), and the infamous Harvey
Up and at ‘em in the fitness center. Two guys show up, plug in a laptop, an proceed to do a workout following some guy on their computer. Weird…sort of like mini-kick boxing stuff. Maybe it got harder after the first 20 minutes!
Breakfast at our spiffy Sheration Four Points: your choice of oranges or apples with that cereal; not even a banana! $6
Off early to the ballpark: I like to find the place, walk around, have time to shop, evaluate the concessions, get ready to score the game, and start taking notes of the new ballpark to enter into the scorecard. Okay, so I misjudged the one: we show up around 11:40, park right next to the park, and then after getting all set, wait out a two hour and forty minute rain delay.
The good news: we see a statue of Hank Greenberg, decide to e-mail it to our friend Harvey. He replies: what section are you sitting in? We reply: 130. We sit in our seats, even though the game is on hold and it is pretty hot, we’re enjoying the light sprinkles. Around 2pm, who shows up: HARVEY!!!!! The one person we send a note to (he lives in Oakland), happens to be in Detroit for a wedding, and has scarfed up the head honcho’s Tigers tickets. He upgrades us (from our very good seats) to third row behind the A’s dugout. How close are we: we can hear the players swearing at the fans that are not-even-loud hecklers!
We eat gyros and fries before the game (DUH! the game doesn't start until 3:45), a micro-brew during the rain delay, and roasted almonds during the game. The regular gyro is decent, chicken just dry without a ton of yogurt sauce. Total: $30
After the game, (well, not exactly after: we leave after 6 hours in the park), we head to Jenny and Arjun’s place for a tour. They have moved from DC to Birmingham, and we get to compare since we visited their DC place a few years ago. Pretty spiffy, lots of green space, big rooms, and just like the old old-style homes (Jenny grew up near us in Oakland and her parents now live around the corner from Harvey…this guy is everywhere!).
Pizza and salad in downtown Birmingham, $30.
Ballpark: The park is typical of the new style, spacious in the concessions, a bit eccentric in the layout of the field, and the fans are very close to the action. Statues in the stands in left centerfield, a carousel and baseball ferris wheel for the kids behind third, a number of displays highlighting teams and players from the past, and lots of places to buy Tigers-branded stuff. I get a Comerica Park t-shirt to add to the collection ($25, cheaper than the Tokyodome tee).
The game: A’s start Trevor Cahill, who seemingly has been on the mound 75% of the games I’ve seen in person the last two years. He mystifies the Tigers, and the A’s play great defense. The Tigers start their top guy, Justin Verlander. I think they delayed the start of the game to avoid getting him in for a few innings and then having to pull him after the delay. He gets off to a slow start and the A’s score 2 runs right off the bat, hold the lead and win 4-1. Verlander is practically unhittable from the 2nd to the 6th inning, yet he and ump (and the Tigers bench) whine about the balls and strikes constantly. Meanwhile, Cahill seems way less impressive and yet he mows down the middle of the Tigers order, and only gives up a run after being removed in the 7th.
A great day at the park, if only 3 hours longer than it should’ve been! DB a real trooper, she hangs on for far longer than necessary. She even outlasts Harvey!