About six weeks ago, I blogged about the Surging Detroit Tigers, who mired in mediocrity started winning about the time the NBA and NHL seasons ended. My premise was that — rightly or wrongly — with renewed media and fan attention, came renewed effort and better outcomes.
The Detroit Tigers’ record for June and July was a stellar 32-21, allowing them to climb out of cellar and claw their way to the 500 level — where they have been seemingly content to stay since the All-Star break.
The Tigers have the talent, they have the ability, and they have the support — both from fans and management — but something is missing, be it the will to win or the focus to play well for an entire game. As a consequence, an above average team is posting only average results.
I provided an excuse for their season starting slump, given the excitement over the Detroit Pistons’ and Red Wings’ post season success. (The Pistons played for the conference championship, while the Red Wings went all the way, winning another Stanley Cup). But there are no distractions now and I am unwilling to extend any more excuses.
Anyway, the Olympics will be starting in a few days, so being the fickle fan that I am, I’ll check back with baseball in a few weeks and see how the Tigers fared while the most of the world watched the Olympics. In that span of time, they have the potential to rise to the level of contender — all they’ll need to do is jettison their contentment with being average.