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 1984 Detroit Tigers honored 9/28/09 at Comerica Park

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PostSubject: 1984 Detroit Tigers honored 9/28/09 at Comerica Park   Mon Sep 28, 2009 9:17 pm

09/24/2009 2:02 PM ET
1984 Detroit Tigers honored Monday at Comerica Park
25th Anniversary Reunion features Q&A session, photo opportunities; first 10,000 fans receive '84 road jersey, gates open at 5 p.m.

DETROIT - The 1984 Detroit Tigers will be honored during an on-field, pregame ceremony at 6:40 p.m. on Monday, September 28 to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Tigers World Series championship. Twenty-four members of the '84 Tigers are scheduled to participate in the 1984 World Championship 25th Anniversary reunion, including Sparky Anderson, Darrell Evans, ALCS MVP Kirk Gibson, 1984 AL MVP and Cy Young winner Guillermo Hernandez, Jack Morris, Lance Parrish and World Series MVP Alan Trammell. Gates open early at 5 p.m.

The Tigers will host the Minnesota Twins at 7:05 p.m. to begin a seven-game homestand. Tickets are available for all remaining home games at the Comerica Park Box Office, online at, by phone at (866) 66-TIGER (84437), at Detroit-area Meijer stores and at Hockeytown Authentics, located at 1845 E. Big Beaver Road in Troy.

Fans have the opportunity to interact with members of the 1984 Tigers from 5:15-6:10 p.m. either during a question and answer session in the FS Detroit Brushfire Grill or during photo opportunities at Sections 125 and 144. Additionally, the first 10,000 fans to enter Comerica Park will receive a free 1984 Detroit Tigers replica road jersey, sponsored by Frito-Lay, and throughout the game hundreds of fans will have a chance to win 1984 autographed memorabilia.

The 1984 Tigers finished with the best record in baseball that season and a franchise best for most wins in a season, ending with a 104-58 record to win the American League East Division. The team swept the Kansas City Royals in three games to win the American League pennant and then defeated the San Diego Padres in five games during the Fall Classic. The Tigers captured the organization's fourth World Series title on October 14 that season, in front of 51,901 fans at Tiger Stadium.

Media members are invited to attend the '84 Tigers team photo at 2 p.m. on the field, and a press conference with members of the '84 Tigers at 3 p.m. in the auxiliary clubhouse (on service level).

NOTE: Please see the attached 1984 World Series 25th Anniversary logo for your use in print, on-line and during your television broadcasts.

Scheduled Attendees (24):


Rod Allen (OF)
Doug Bair (RHP)
Juan Berenguer (RHP)
Dave Bergman (INF)
Tom Brookens (INF)
Darrell Evans (INF)
Barbaro Garbey (INF/OF)
Kirk Gibson (OF)
Johnny Grubb (OF)
Guillermo Hernandez (LHP)
Larry Herndon (OF)
Ruppert Jones (OF)
Jack Morris (RHP)
Lance Parrish (C)
Dan Petry (RHP)
Dave Rozema (RHP)
Bill Scherrer (LHP)
Alan Trammell (INF)
Milt Wilcox (RHP)


Sparky Anderson (Manager)
Roger Craig (Pitching Coach)
Dick Tracewski (Infield Coach)
Gates Brown (Hitting Coach)
Pio DiSalvo (Trainer)
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PostSubject: Re: 1984 Detroit Tigers honored 9/28/09 at Comerica Park   Mon Sep 28, 2009 9:21 pm

Monday, September 28, 2009
Rain holds off enough to honor '84 Tigers, but game postponed
Tom Gage / The Detroit News

Detroit -- It rained on their parade. Literally.

But that didn't drown out the cheers from the crowd at Comerica Park for the return of the 1984 World Series champion Tigers.

In a pregame ceremony, complete with messages from team members who couldn't attend, the 1984 Tigers team was honored on the field.

The rain didn't let up, and the scheduled Twins-Tigers game was postponed until noon Tuesday as part of a split doubleheader.

Speaking to the crowd, Anderson paid tribute to the two managers on hand, Jim Leyland of the Tigers and Ron Gardenhire of the Twins as "two of the best," but he also said the reunion was special because it could be the last time the 1984 team is ever together again.

Darrell Evans, designated hitter on the 1984 team, said the reunion was an emotional one.

"Even getting off the airplane, people were glad we were back," he said. "These fans are still special. There's no other place like Detroit. It was a treasure to win it here."

"If you have to choose between power and speed and it often turns out you have to make that choice, you've got to go for speed." Source: TV Guide Interview (April 3, 1982)
-- Sparky Anderson
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PostSubject: Re: 1984 Detroit Tigers honored 9/28/09 at Comerica Park   Mon Sep 28, 2009 9:37 pm

Sparky Anderson doubt so many members from the 1984 team will ever
reunite like this again. (John T. Greilick / The Detroit News)

Monday, September 28, 2009
Tom Gage
Still Sparky after all these years

Detroit -- Give him an inch, he'll talk a mile.

Just like the old days.

As Sparky Anderson spoke, as he laughed, as he gestured -- as he did everything as animated as ever -- all that had changed was time.

Give him an inch, he'll talk a mile.

Just like the old days.

As Sparky Anderson spoke, as he laughed, as he gestured -- as he did everything as animated as ever -- all that had changed was time.

And as we all know, "as time goes on," said Sparky. "things pass.

"You tell children in the third grade that they'll wake someday and be out of college. I don't know how. It just happens."

Six managers, two owners, a demolished ballpark and a lost World Series later, the champions of 1984 were back together again on Monday night.

While posing for the team photo, they sounded the same, more than they looked the same -- chirping at each other.

Yapping as they yapped back then.

Together again

Dave Rozema in the back row. Kirk Gibson, too -- barking out to those in the front row. Lots of laughs, of course.

But lots of realism, too.

"Think about this now," said Anderson. "There will be four or five of these guys together again, maybe, but never all together again. I'm 75. I know I ain't going to make it."

Some will say that for a day, the 1984's were a team again. In their minds, though, they'll always be a team. Have always been a team.

And the funny thing is that Anderson is STILL their manager -- the one they still thank for teaching them to respect the game and play it the right way.

"We all love him for that," said Lance Parrish.

"He taught me to become a pitcher who never wanted to come out of the game, but would yell at me when I didn't want to," said Jack Morris. "He made me the pitcher I was."

"I needed to change from the way I was, initially, and I changed," said Kirk Gibson. "I don't know what I would have accomplished in baseball without him."

"I played for him in both places he managed," said Doug Bair. "Not many people can say this, but I saw Sparky change when he got to Detroit.

"He didn't just have a good influence on us, we had a good influence on him. It was beneficial for everyone. He brought out the best in us, but at the same time, here he grew into being more involved with his players."

Twenty-five years later, the friendships and feelings which made that team so close were still evident.

Anderson endures

And 25 years later, with no evidence that he's ever stopped, Sparky was still talking -- still spinning his stories so fast that Morris, for one, paused at the next table to marvel now at what he used to marvel at then:

Sparky's bull.

No other way to describe it.

Sparky's homespun, but irrepressible bull. For instance, he told Twins manager Ron Gardenhire on Monday how much he admires the job he's done with a team continually loses its star players to free agency -- or to the trades the likelihood of free agency forces.

"Someone asked me how he does it," said Anderson. "I said, 'It's very easy. I could do that, too. What I would do so I wouldn't have to worry about (losing my players) is put a gun to my head.

"Frankly, I don't know how the heck he does it."

But he does it.

"That was pretty cool," Gardenhire said of Sparky's visit. "It was honestly one of those times you just melt."

Past and present

Anderson also made a point of visiting with Tigers' manager Jim Leyland. He didn't go into his office, or even into the clubhouse, because he didn't want to distract a team getting ready for a big game.

So the two of them met outside the clubhouse before the game, a game that never got under way because of too much rain.

"I love his message to his players that they should enjoy what they're going through. Like I told Dave Dombrowski, you have seven games remaining, but if you think of them as seven, that's a roll of the dice in a casino.

"Play one, and see what happens. Then play the next one, and see what happens. Let's not jump ahead. People always want to jump ahead. But I'll tell you what, there are some great managers now.

"And I want to give them the best advice I ever heard from a man I loved -- Al Lopez, who used to come to the ballpark in Tampa when I was with the Reds.

"I asked Al what was the secret of becoming a great manager. He said he didn't know he was one, but he told me, "My legs didn't manage, my feet didn't manage, my arms didn't manage, my head didn't manage, my ears didn't manage.

"But my eyes told me everything I needed to know. So I always tell managers now, 'Go with your eyes. Nothing else.'

"That's why I would always take a little stroll through the clubhouse. My eyes would tell me if anyone had been out all night. My eyes told me everything.

"But let me tell you something, Detroit will always be one of the great baseball towns. It's so sad to see right now, but it will be back. It will return."

And that wasn't bull.

Former Tigers shortstop Alan Trammell signs a seat.

Kirk Gibson, left, and Gates Brown talk before Monday's ceremony.

Former Tigers manager Sparky Anderson and members of the World Series
champion 1984 Detroit Tigers pose for a 25th anniversary team photo.
The group was honored before Monday game at Comerica Park.
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PostSubject: Re: 1984 Detroit Tigers honored 9/28/09 at Comerica Park   Mon Sep 28, 2009 9:59 pm

Tigers game rained out. '84 team honored.

Members of the World Series Champion 1984 Detroit Tigers pose for a 25th Anniversary team photo and take questions from the media at Comerica Park in Detroit Monday, Sept. 28, 2009.

John T. Greilick / The Detroit News

Pictured are: Front Row: Alan Trammell, Gates Brown, Sparky Anderson,
Dick Tracewski, Roger Craig Pio DiSalvo, Jim Schmakel Second Row: Rod
Allen, Larry Herndon, Barbaro Garbey, Doug Bair, Ruppert Jones, Tom
Brookens, Dave Bergman, Jack Morris, Dan Petry Third Row: Bill
Scherrer, Juan Berenguer, Dave Rozema, Lance Parrish, Milt Wilcox, John
Grubb, Kirk Gibson, Darrell Evans, Guillermo Hernandez

Sparky Anderson, manager of the 1984 World Champion Detroit Tigers,
laughs as he recalls a funny moment from his days as skipper of the

Pitcher Jack Morris talks about Sparky.

The 1984 World Series Championship trophy.

From left: 1984 Tigers Alan Trammell, shortstop, Gates Brown, hitting
coach, and Sparky Anderson, manager, share a laugh before the reunion
team photo.

A long line of fans wait in the rain for the gates to Comerica Park to
open for Monday night's game between the first-place Tigers and
second-place Twins. The first 10,000 fans through the gates received a
free 1984-replica Tigers jerseys as part of the 25th Anniversary
Celebration of the World Champion 1984 Tigers.

Comerica Park event staff hand out free 1984-replica Tigers jerseys to
early-arriving fans at Comerica Park as part of the 25th Anniversary
Celebration of the World Champion 1984 Tigers. The game was rained out
between the Tigers and the Twins.

An usher waits for fans to arrive at Comerica Park for the first game
of a pivotal four-game series against the Minnesota Twins, whom the
Tigers lead by two games in the American League Central Division going
into play Monday night in Detroit.

Steve Pauley, left, and Gary Pearson, both of Dearborn Heights, try on
the 1984 Detroit Tigers replica jerseys they received free for being
among the first 10,000 fans through the gates at Comerica Park for
Monday night's game. The game was rained out and the Tigers will face
the Twins in a day-night double header Tuesday.

Fans receive '84 commemorative jerseys as they enter the gates of Comerica Park Monday.

Right handed pitcher Dave Rozema, left, sprays a bit of water off his
umbrella onto right handed pitcher Juan Berenguer during the special
ceremony to honor the 1984 Tigers.

Right handed pitcher Dave Rozema and right handed pitcher Juan Berenguer share a laugh during the ceremony in the rain.

Kirk Gibson raises his hands to salute Tiger fans during the special ceremony honoring the '84 Tigers.

Tigers manager Jim Leyland, front, applauds during the special ceremony to honor the 1984 Tigers.

Former manager Sparky Anderson points towards manager Jim Leyland as he talks to the fans.

1984 World Series MVP, Tigers shortstop Alan Trammell is introduced to the Comerica Park crowd.

Sparky Anderson, manager of the World Champion 1984 Detroit Tigers
addresses the Comerica Park crowd telling the fans that Detroit will be

Doug Bair, a pitcher on the 1984 Detroit Tigers World Championship
team, stops to autograph a poster for the fans after the players were
honored on the 25th anniversary of their championship season.

The tarp never came off the infield, although the rain stopped a few
times, before the game was postponed and rescheduled for Tuesday at
12:05 p.m.

"If you have to choose between power and speed and it often turns out you have to make that choice, you've got to go for speed." Source: TV Guide Interview (April 3, 1982)
-- Sparky Anderson
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PostSubject: Tigers recall the path to '84 title   Mon Sep 28, 2009 11:16 pm

Posted: Sept. 27, 2009
Tigers recall the path to '84 title


On a foggy Sunday night in October, 25 years ago, Tony Gwynn of the San Diego Padres lifted a shallow fly ball down the leftfield line at Tiger Stadium.

"Here comes Herndon," Tigers radio announcer Ernie Harwell intoned. "He's got it -- and the Tigers are the champions of 1984!"

It was Oct. 14, 1984 -- 7:41 p.m., to be exact -- when Larry Herndon caught the final out in Game 5 of the World Series. As a light rain started to fall, delirious fans stormed the field.

Kirk Gibson, with aggressive base-running and a dramatic, eighth-inning, three-run homer -- his second of the game -- was the hero of the 8-4 victory.

In capturing the franchise's fourth world championship, the Tigers joined the 1927 New York Yankees to become only the second team to go wire-to-wire in the regular season and win a World Series. And Sparky Anderson became the first manager to win world championships in both leagues.

When he was hired by the Tigers in June 1979, Anderson said the team would win a championship in five years. Thanks to general manager Bill Lajoie's drafts, the farm system and savvy acquisitions, the skipper's prediction came true.

With the signing of free-agent slugger Darrell Evans after the 1983 campaign and the spring-training acquisition of first baseman Dave Bergman and reliever Willie Hernandez (who would win the 1984 Cy Young and AL MVP awards), the Tigers fortified an already contending squad.

The team's strength was up the middle with catcher Lance Parrish; ace right-hander Jack Morris; the best keystone combination in baseball, shortstop Alan Trammell and second baseman Lou Whitaker; and one of the game's premier centerfielders, Chet Lemon.

Yet no one could have envisioned a 1984 season that began with an incomprehensible 35-5 start highlighted by a Jack Morris no-hitter.

Living up to expectations

Gibson remembers the anxiety of being the front-runner throughout the 1984 campaign.

"We got off to such a great start that, to an extent, you kind of lived in fear the rest of the year because there is a lot on the line, and the idea of not becoming world champions was a scary thought," said Gibson, now a coach with the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Harwell said that in his daily walks with Anderson that season, the manager also expressed concern.

"Sparky did not relax very much that season even though you would have thought otherwise," Harwell said. "He said it was one of his toughest years because he had a fear that the Tigers might blow it in the playoffs and World Series."

After finishing the regular season with a 104-58 record -- the most wins in Tigers history and 15 games ahead of Toronto -- Detroit swept the Kansas City Royals in three games in the AL Championship Series and claimed the AL pennant.

In recognition of his .417 playoff batting average and defensive plays, Gibson was named MVP of the ALCS. He could also have been named the most pleasant surprise of 1984.

In what became his breakout year, Gibson batted .282 with 27 home runs, 91 RBIs and 29 stolen bases.

The Detroit-area native and former Michigan State All-America receiver bypassed an NFL career. He graced the cover of Sports Illustrated in 1980 as a promising rookie but had been a disappointment. In 1983 he batted .227.

Despite his early career struggles, Anderson saw Gibson's potential and appreciated his competitive spirit.

"If we won a game and Gibby went 0-for-4, he'd be so happy," Anderson said. "But if we lost and he went 3-for-4, that's one ornery man. I knew then that I had a guy who came to this ballpark to play."

Edging closer to the title

After brushing aside Kansas City, the Tigers faced the San Diego Padres led by stalwarts Steve Garvey, Greg Nettles, Gwynn and closer Goose Gossage. The teams split the first two games in San Diego before returning to Detroit.

On a Friday night the Tigers won, 5-2, highlighted by Marty Castillo's two-run homer and Lemon's seventh-inning, game-saving catch in center.

The next afternoon Detroit took a commanding, three-games-to-one lead as World Series MVP Trammell (.450 average) smacked a pair of two-run homers and Morris pitched a complete-game five-hitter in a 4-2 victory.

Only once had the Tigers won a world championship at the corner of Michigan and Trumbull -- 49 years earlier.

With 51,901 fans on hand and millions of viewers watching the NBC telecast by Vin Scully and Joe Garagiola, former third baseman and Tigers TV announcer George Kell threw out the ceremonial first pitch.

In the bottom of the first inning, Gibson commenced his night of heroics. With one on and one out, on the first pitch from lefty Mark Thurmond, Gibson launched a rocket into the rightfield upper deck as Scully told viewers, "And there it goes, for Michigan State and all of Tigerdom."

The Tigers added another run in the first inning and took a 3-0 lead, but by the fourth inning, San Diego had tied the score.

In the fifth, Gibson utilized his speed and aggressive base-running to give the Tigers a 4-3 lead. After slapping a single to left, Gibson tagged on Parrish's deep fly out to leftfield and slid safely into second in a bang-bang play. After consecutive walks to Herndon and Lemon loaded the bases with one out, Gibson was perched on third base as pinch-hitter Rusty Kuntz stepped to the plate.

Kuntz lofted a fly ball to shallow right that rightfielder Gwynn had trouble tracking. With his momentum carrying him away from the plate, second baseman Alan Wiggins snared the ball.

To everyone's surprise, Gibson took off for home. He slid so fiercely that Gibson ripped the right knee out of his pants. The throw never made it home, and the Tigers took a 4-3 lead.

"I knew I probably shouldn't have gone, but I was very aggressive and had good speed and size, and surprise was part of the element," Gibson said. "Even if Wiggins had turned around and made a great throw, the catcher still had to hold on to the ball. I was prepared to definitely press the issue. If he had the ball, I was going to drill him. It was just an exciting play."

Each team added a run, and it was 5-4 going into the bottom of the eighth. Gossage walked Castillo, who advanced to second on Whitaker's sacrifice bunt that was scored as a single when Gary Templeton failed to cover second base. Trammell's sacrifice bunt then sent the runners to second and third with one out and Gibson stepping to the plate.

What followed was the signature moment of the '84 World Series.

Gibson's big at-bat

With one out, runners on second and third, first base open and the dangerous Gibson at the plate, conventional wisdom called for an intentional walk to set up a double play or force-out at the plate. Anderson recalls what happened next.

"I always watched the other manager because I wanted to see what he was going to do," he said. "I saw Dick (Williams) say 'four,' meaning walk him. But Gossage was such a competitor and had struck out Gibson so many times, Goose thought he could just get him again."

When Gossage shook off his manager's sign, Williams walked to the mound. TV viewers could read the pitcher's lips, "Let's go after him."

"When Dick walked back to the dugout, I screamed to Gibby, 'He don't want to walk you,' " Anderson said. "Let me tell you, Gibby will not allow you to embarrass him -- that ain't going to happen. You're going to have problems on your hands."

The game's ace reliever reared back and threw an outside fastball for ball one. On his second delivery, Gibson's eyes lit on another fastball, and he sent it deep into the night, into the rightfield upper deck.

"I knew then it was all over," Anderson said. "And to be honest, I realized I would be the first manager to win a World Series in both leagues."

In the ninth, Hernandez secured an 8-4 victory, the Tigers' fourth and most recent world championship.

Twenty-five years later, Free Press Tigers beat writer Bill McGraw recalls the sting of champagne in his eyes during the locker room celebration.

"Although Alan Trammell deserved to win the World Series MVP award, Kirk Gibson stole the show in the last game," said McGraw. "He can always look back on what he did in the final game to win the World Series for his hometown team. He fulfilled the fantasy of every baseball-playing 12-year-old kid in the world."

Party like it's 1984

• What: Reunion of the 1984 World Series champion Tigers.

• When: Before Monday night's 7:05 game against the Twins.

• Where: Comerica Park, Detroit.

Dream team

A look inside the 1984 Tigers:
The lineup
The first four positions were pretty well set:
2B ... Lou Whitaker
SS ... Alan Trammell
... Kirk Gibson
... Lance Parrish

• After that, it often was:
DH ... Darrell Evans
CF ... Chet Lemon
... Larry Herndon
1B ... Dave Bergman
... Howard Johnson

The bench
UT ... Barbaro Garbey
... Tom Brookens
OF ... Ruppert Jones
UT ... Johnny Grubb
... Rusty Kuntz
UT ... Marty Castillo

The rotation
... Jack Morris
... Dan Petry
... Milt Wilcox
RH ... Juan Berenguer
... Dave Rozema

The 'pen
LH ... Willie Hernandez
... Aurelio Lopez
RH ... Doug Bair

Statistical leaders
Average - Trammell .314
Home runs - Parrish 33
RBIs - Parrish 98
Runs - Gibson 92
Stolen Bases - Gibson 29
Victories - Morris 19
Saves - Hernandez 32
ERA - Hernandez 1.92
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