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June 18, 2005 - Image 12

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 2005-06-18

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12 - The Michigan Daily - Monday, July 18, 2005
After hosting All-Stars,
Detroit returns to normal

14

By Ian Robinson
Daily Sports Writer
DETROIT - Downtown Detroit
came alive last week as baseball
enthusiasts from around the world
gathered at Comerica Park for Tues-
day night's Major League Baseball
All-Star Game.
But this weekend, life returned to
normal.
The crowds that lined Woodward
Avenue and Witherell Street to wel-
come their baseball heroes were
replaced by the daily grind. The
corporate tents that were erected
in spaces surrounding the stadium
returned to just parking lots. The
lines that formed outside of local
eateries became barren sidewalks,
awaiting the evening rush.
"It was more electric (for the home
run derby and All Star Game)," said
Dave Gorski, a Comerica Park usher

working his seventh season."(It was)
more festive outside of the stadium
with the tents and parties."
Inside the park, posters advertis-
ing the All-Star Game were removed,
several promotional booths were
gone, and the customary wooden
seats with green cushions replaced
the All-Star commemorative ones.
ESPN's broadcast location no lon-
ger dominated the walkway in right-
center field and auxiliary press boxes
along the baselines were dismantled.
At the souvenir stands, much of
the remaining All-Star parapherna-
lia was on sale even as Tigers gear
returned to the shelves and displays.
The ballpark's physical differenc-
es were not the only things that fans
noticed as they returned to Com-
erica Park for this weekend's series
between the Detroit Tigers and Kan-
sas City Royals noticed.
Diana Hicklen of Westland, who

has sat in the first row on the third
base line at both Comerica Park and
Tiger Stadium since 1976, sees a dif-
ference in the makeup of the crowd
between the All-Star Game and the
weekend series against the Royals.
"There are people from all over
the world at the All-Star Game,"
Hicklen said. "The regular season
games have more of a local crowd."
One unique aspect of the All-Star
experience that Hicklen enjoyed was
the presence of several baseball leg-
ends in the ballpark. She claimed to
have seen Brooks Robinson and Dave
Winfield, while Guillermo Hernan-
dez sat a few rows behind her.
Tom Allemon of St. Clair Shores
sees a more fan-friendly atmosphere
at the games.
"(The regular season games are)
much more fan-friendly," Allemon said.
"Everybody is enjoying the game."
Having the opportunity to attend
the All-Star festivities will leave
fans with memories they will cher-
ish forever.
For Hicklen, the crowd's energy
when Detroit catcher Ivan Rodri-
guez's finished second in the home
run derby will always remain.
"(I will remember) the way the
city got behind (Rodriguez) in the
home run derby and willed some
of those home runs over the fence,"
Hicklen said.
Allemon said that he will always
remember the sight of seeing the
players line up on the field before
the game.
After two seasons of anticipating the
All-Star Game, Gorski foresees playoff
games at Comerica Park this fall.
"Hopefully, we have the playoffs
to look forward to," Gorski said.

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Houston Astros pitcher Roger Clemens, a six-time Cy Young award winner, pitched in
last Tuesday's All-Star Game at Comerica Park. The American League team beat the
National League team, 7-5, the ninth consecutive year the AL has won.
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