Let’s look back at the Gold Glove winners in franchise history:
Al Kaline OF
Al Kaline OF
Al Kaline OF
Al Kaline OF
Al Kaline OF
62-63, 3rd Place; 10 GB
Tigers vs. Royals | 7:05 p.m. ET – Comerica Park | On the air: FSD/AM 1270 and 97.1 FM
Tigers 12 – Royals 3
51-49, 3rd place; 5 GB Chicago
Tigers @ Rays | 12:10 p.m. ET – Tropicana Field | On the air: FSD/AM 1270 and 97.1 FM
Rays 7 – Tigers 4
33-29, 2nd place; 2.5 GB Minnesota
Tigers vs. Nationals | 7:05 p.m. ET – Comerica Park | On the air: FSD/AM 1270 and 97.1 FM
Tigers History Lesson
On this Date in Tigers History
- 2008 — Former Tigers pitching coach Billy Muffett passed away at 78. Muffett took over for Roger Craig as Tigers pitching coach in 1985 and remained on Sparky Anderson‘s staff until 1994. As a player, Muffett pitched for Red Sox, Giants and Cardinals from 1957 through 1962 and finished with a 16-23 record, 15 saves, and a 4.33 ERA.
- 1965 — Denny McLain made a first-inning relief appearance and struck out the first seven batters he faced, setting a major league record. He recorded 14 strikeouts in 6.2 innings as Detroit rallied to beat the Boston Red Sox 6-5. Bill Freehan had a record-tying 19 putouts at catcher.
- 1963 — The Tigers acquired OF George Thomas and cash considerations from the Angels for RHP Paul Foytack and infielder Frank Kostro.
- 1960 — The Tigers acquired RHP Clem Labine from the Dodgers for RHP Ray Semproch
- 1948 — The Tigers and Hal Newhouser beat the Philadelphia Athletics, 4-1, before a crowd of 54,480 in the first night game at Briggs Stadium. The Tigers were the last American League team to install lights.
I thought it was my birthday gift from the Indians — Carl Pavano starting? That’s gotta be a win waiting to happen, no? No. Not against this mirage of a first-place club.
Some birthday for me. Actually, yesterday was a fine day and I never let the Tigers’ performance impact my birthday mood.
Because there’s absolutely nothing positive to discuss about the Tigers’ finale against the Tribe, humor me as I walk through notable Tigers games and events that happened on Aug. 2 since the year I was born.
- Overall, the Tigers are 20 and 15 on my birthday; in seven years they didn’t play, including during the 1981 strike.
- The Tigers beat the Twins 6-5 at Metropolitan Stadium on the day I was born in 1968. Don McMahon got the win in relief of Joe Sparma. Bill Freehan drove in three runs while the Twins’ Rod Carew went 3 for 4, of course.
- On Aug. 2, 1972, the Tigers purchases the contract of P Woodie Fryman from the Phillies. Two days later, they purchased C Duke Sims‘s contract from the Dodgers. Fryman, just 4-10 for Philadelphia, goes 10-3 for Detroit, while Sims hits .316 for the Tigers in 38 games.
- In 1975, at Fenway Park the game-time temperature was 103 degrees and the Tigers wilted under the heat of Rick Wise and the Red Sox and lost 7-2.
- In 1984, I was there when Jack Morris out dueled Bert Blyleven as the Tigers beat the Indians 2-1.
- On Aug. 2, 1985, Frank Tanana allowed one hit, a homer by Ben Oglivie in the 5th, and struck out eight on his way to beating the Brewers, 4-1.
- In 1990, Yankees rookie Kevin Maas hits his 10th home run in just 77 at bats, the fastest any player has ever reached that mark. Big deal. The Tigers won 6-5 in 11 innings.
Thanks for taking the trip down memory lane with me. Assuming you’re still there. Hello…?
Between Bill Freehan and Lance Parrish, the Tigers’ backstop bridge to the future was ol’ Milt May.
The Tigers picked up May in a Dec. 6, 1975 trade with the Astros. He came to Detroit with Jim Crawford and Dave Roberts for Leon Roberts, Terry Humphrey, Gene Pentz and Mark Lemongello.
May’s first season as a Tiger was Freehan’s last, and it was one to forget. A broken ankle limited him to a half-dozen games behind the plate. Freehan and Bruce Kimm, Mark Fidrych’s personal catcher, shared receiving duties that year.
Here’s how May, who wore number 12, was described in the 1978 Tigers Yearbook:
Steady it goes with Milt May, the Tigers’ experienced catcher. He missed all but six games of the 1976 season, his first as a Tiger, because of a broken ankle. But 1977 was another story, as Milt caught 111 games with fine defensive skill and some timely hitting.
His .249 at the plate [sic] included two eight-game hitting streaks and 12 home runs, the most for May in his major league career. One of the homers was Milt’s second grand slammer and he also hit two for the circuit in one game.
That year, May, the son of Phillies’ infielder Pinky May, caught in 94 games and despite being just 27, was being phased out in the transition to Parrish. The Big Wheel appeared in 85 games at catcher in 1978 and 142 in ’79.
After just five games in ’79, May’s tenure with the Tigers was over. On May 27, the White Sox purchased his contract and the Gary, Ind., native played in 65 games for Chicago. In the offseason, May signed with the Giants where he played from 1980 through August 1983 when he was dealt to his original team, the Pirates.
Milt May’s final season was 1984. In 50 games with Pittsburgh, he hit just .177. His final career line: 1,192 games, .263 average, 77 homers and 443 RBI.
After his playing career, May went the coaching route. First as Jim Leyland‘s hitting coach with the Pirates (1987-96), then the Marlins (1997-98). He spent the first half of the ’99 season with Tampa Bay and then became Leyland’s pitching coach in Colorado for the remainder of that season.
Happy 58th Birthday, Milt.