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Detroit Rock City: Baseball, Beer and deBauchery

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Have Buccos, Will Travel

I can thank Casey for my baseball addiction (which is preferable to say, a meth addiction). I had always liked going to Pirate games, but once he encouraged me to read Moneyball, I all of the sudden understood what it was they were doing. Turns out it’s much more than just standing there waiting for the ball to get hit.

Casey grew up a huge Detroit Tigers fan, and adopted the Pirates as his hometown team. So when he saw that the Pirates were going to Detroit to play a series, he asked me, hey, woman, want to go to Detroit and see the Buccos play? I said yes.

I do love an adventure. Which was what I told people when I announced I was going to see the Pirates play in Detroit. You would have thought I said I was having a voluntary frontal lobotomy. “Why on earth would you want to do that?” Apparently Detroit doesn’t has the great of a rep for a weekend getaway destination. They have the casinos, but much like Mexico, if you wander out of the tourist zone, you are on your mother trucking own.

Unfazed, we made our way to Comerica Park all decked out in our Pirates’ finest. We didn’t come all the way to the Motor City to hide our Pittsburgh pride.

This is called ‘representing’.

Casey had scored us great seats for both games. I was very happy with where were Saturday.

Both teams had on throwback uniforms, which got very confusing. At times during the game, we accidentally rooted for the wrong people. I think.

I made three key discoveries at this game.

1.) I absolutely love Leinenkugel’s Summer Shandy. There was a stand right by our section. It was amazing.

2.) If you sit in the infield inbox, you get WAITERS. They bring you menus and then your drinks and your nachos, and you never have to get up except to pee because you’ve had 8 Leinenkugels.

This was bad ass.

3.) Speaking of nachos, they serve them in a batting helmet. They give you a Tigers batting helmet FULL OF NACHOS. Someone at PNC Park needs to get on this ASAP.

Actually, I made 4.

4.) Don’t call Prince Fielder’s mother a dump truck. Listen. I was respectful. There were little ones around us, we were the visiting team in a town that isn’t always known for not killing people, so I wasn’t about to go in there and run my mouth like some sort of tough guy.


I did have a respectable amount of Summer Shandy’s in me, and, I’m sorry, Prince Fielder is not the kind of guy that you would look at and go, yes, professional athlete.

So when he came up to bat (I will say, even though he is a bit on the tubby side, my man can move), I stood up and hollered, “HEY PRINCE FIELDER! YOUR MAMA IS A DUMP TRUCK!”

Rather tame ‘your mama’ taunt, if you ask me. If you ask the man sitting in front of me with his wife and two teenage sons, it was out of line. He, without turning around, says, “You should look in the mirror. You’re a dump truck.”

Now this man doesn’t know me. But one would think that if I’m brave enough to be at a Detroit Tiger’s game, bedecked in my finest team gear, drinking their beer, eating their nachos and taunting their first base man, I’m probably not going to just let that slide.

I lean into him, “Excuse me? Did you just call me FAT?”

“Yeah, yeah I DID.”

At this point Casey decides that it’s Defend My Honor time, and since there wasn’t a water tower to climb, he did the next best thing. Put his hands on the man. Not like a punch or anything. Or even a push. More like hands around the neck you say your sorry to her thing. It was sort of sexy.

The whole thing blew over in a few seconds. The game was over, everyone was leaving, no one really wanted to get in a fight, there were kids there. It was the only blemish on an otherwise fabulous trip.

We decide to hit Greektown. We were just walking around, having a good times, drinking Summer Shandy’s all over the city, when we pass an facade that had an awning advertising tarot card readings. At 11:00 at night. I said, “HEY! I wanna get my cards read! I have never had it done before, we’re here, let’s do something cray cray and get them done!’

Casey was like, fine. But not really fine, gee, I can’t wait to do this. More like fine, she isn’t going to shut up until I do this, so let’s go, get it done, and find a bar with a band.

We go to the door and there is a big burly man in a suit. He asked us for our ID. Which I thought was strange and a little over the top for a tarot card reading. He looks us up and down, with a look of clear disgust.

“You are vay underdrvessed. BUT! You are frvrom out of state. I let you in anyway.” (he had a think accent of undetermined lineage)

Now I’m like waaaaaa? You have to DRESS UP for this reader? She better be good. THEN he charges us ten dollars, just to get in to see her. I was like, there better be some freaking free Leinenkugels up here. THEN we start walking up the steps, and all I can here is a thumping house beat and someone rapping. I was like, how are we even going to HEAR her read our cards with the music up this loud??

Casey just rolled his eyes because at this point he had already figured out what it took me to the top of the steps to determine. This wasn’t a tarot card joint. It was some sort of underground DJ rooftop club. With a full bar. WIN! Also, way better than having your cards read.

We had excellent seats for Sunday’s game, too. We were two rows back, right along the foul line. The people in front of us were lovely, and were the owners of a local bar, The Old Miami.

It was a 1:00 game, and the sun was blasting down on us. And I was the only one in the area with sunscreen. I sort of became a local celebrity.  I was The Girl With The Sunscreen, and people came from rows and rows away to see me.

I learned my lesson from the day before and did not heckle. Not once. I called no one’s mama a dump truck. I was respectful and subdued. And I was rewarded for my good behavior. The bar owner grabbed a foul ball ripped from McClouth (one of the few times he made contact with a ball in his career as a Pirate. Which is, blessedly, over.). She handed it to me, and said she was going to tell everyone she gave it to ‘that nice lady from Pittsburgh’.

Fun fact: the umpires dirty up each ball using mud imported from Delaware. That’s part of their job description: Blow calls, spit all over coaches whilst yelling, and roll the game balls in Delaware mud.

And with that, our trip was over. We stopped and got the kids some Tiger’s gear (a tradition when we travel to games now), and headed out of Michigan.

It really is a gorgeous ball park. They take the whole ‘tiger’ thing VERY SERIOUSLY. There are roughly 3.2 million tigers throughout the park.

Tally for the weekend: won one game, lost one game, found new favorite beer, saw Casey get all manly, did not get tarot cards read, got first MLB ball, discovered hat nachos.

Yours in deciding where to go next,



5 responses »

  1. I got to visit Comerica a couple years ago when I was visiting my buddies in Toledo. The park is beautiful, but to get there, we had to travel some streets that look like they belong in Beirut. There was a family of 4 living in one of the potholes.

    • Casey is from Toledo; that’s why he is such a Tiger’s fan. We walked from our hotel, and we passed this group of homeless of people that had made their own ‘club’. They had a boom box, chairs, a cooler… they were having a grand old time!

      • Oh, Man! I didn’t know Casey was from T-Town! Hope he can come to the thing at La Tavolla, so we can compare notes.

        Yeah, if you live in Toledo, your baseball choices are pretty much Detroit or Cleveland. And who really wants to root for Cleveland at anything?

  2. Let this be lesson number one in why you should always be wearing your half-marathon medal. (Did they give medals for that? I assume so.)

    I’ve also turned Mrs. Bagger into a baseball fan. She, who used to think that all sports were “of the devil.” Look who’s a devil’s child now! She now goes to Pirates games after work and calls me to pick her up. I warn you, baseball is a gateway drug to vile things like cricket, skulling, and Pakistani field hockey.


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