Being in the auto industry has its pluses and minuses. One of the big pluses is usually having a four day weekend including Good Friday and what I call Better Monday. Anyone else out there looking at four days off?
What are your plans (besides attending the Spring Game)?
Growing up in the 90s outside Ann Arbor, I heard a lot on the radio about how the two most difficult positions in Detroit sports were Lions QB and Red Wings goalie. In retrospect, this may have been more about the mediocre results from both at the time (the Peete/Kramer/Ware triumvirate to Scott Mitchell to Charlie Batch and Tim Cheveldae/young Chris Osgood era) than the actual pressure exerted on the position.
Now, from 30,000 feet it looks like these positions don't seem to get that same level of pressure. Matthew Stafford, no matter where one ranks him in the pantheon of current NFL quarterbacks, certainly seems to have stabilized the position here in a fashion not seen since Layne. And given where the Red Wings are as a franchise, they're not a goalie away.
I'm wondering what you think those positions are now.
The only position that seems to jump out is Tigers bullpen, though not necessarily closer. Though he blows up occasionally, KRod is usually good enough to get the job done. This is less true of the set up guys. Bruce Rondon himself, and the front office's belief in him dating back to 2012, may have actively hindered multiple Tiger seasons.
A week from tomorrow, I pack my wife and both young sons in the car, and we drive to Mott Children's Hospital for the first time, where we will have approximately a 2-day stay. The occassion is that my wildly premature (now) 4-year-old will have a number of tests on his chronically problematic pulmonary/respiratory system. This is not unusual for our family at all, and my little one will be okay. We just feel the need to see a different peds pulmonologist.
What is unusual is that this is the first time his needs have taken us away from Grand Rapids, where we live a mere 3 miles from Helen DeVos Children's Hospital. Some of us will be in the hotels around the area of Plymouth Road and 23.
I have been to Ann Arbor a lot (not an alum) but always for sports for the last 30 years or to see my ex from high school in the mid-90's. As a 2-child family, we have the luxury of playing man-to-man defense with the boys. The oldest is 6, and from around late morning on Friday I'll have sole responsibility for him while my wife stays with the little hospitalized one. We don't tend to linger in the hospital room after the little one is stable, we typically just seem and make sure he is comfortable and that my wife has all her meals and such. When we are in GR, me and the 6 y/o just head home.
So the ask... I've got a healthy and fun 6 year old for 24 hours in Ann Arbor. There sure isn't a football or basketball game to attend (week after spring game). He loves Michigan, and he loves sports. What should we do? Is there a way that Friday to meet a coach or a player or tour an arena or field? Does anybody have any connection they can arrange? My 6 year old has the fortune of being the healthy one, but he has sure had some downers in his short life due to having a brother less than 2 years apart that has been gravely ill for much of his life. He could use some kind of cool Michigan experience.
Second part of the ask - I tend to find my way in to the taverns (Arbor, Grizzly Peak, Blue Tractor, etc) when I am there. Where should I take a 6 year old on a Friday night in spring in A2?
Thanks in advance for any and all input. This is the greatest and most well educated population of sports fans on the planet.
Today was quite the day in Michigan sports. Red and Fisher retire. Two MBB players declare for the NBA draft (but won't hire agents). And the blog posts an agonizing "what if" exchange. The latter clearly all just bitter, but the other two sets of items are definitely bittersweet - Red's restoration of M hockey, but the late fall; Fisher's NC and 2 NRU teams, but then that happened; 2 great young men take a chance to follow their dreams after helping take MBB on another exciting run.
So, what's your most bittersweet M sports moment? A game we lost, but shouldn't have been in it? A player that left early, but you couldn't fault them for getting theirs? The coach that almost came to Ann Arbor but thankfully didn't now we know he staffs out recruiting to local ladies of the evening?
For me, I vote Derrick Alexander breaking his leg against BC in 1991. Bitter: If he's healthy, do we stand a better chance against FSU? Or Washington? Sweet: Does Howard make 'the catch' the next week against ND? Or win the Heisman? Thankfully Alexander went on to finish a great M career followed by a solid pro career, but 1991 could have been even more special.
The majority of games would be held in the United States. The 2020s would be a big sports decade if we can get the summer olympics too in 2024.