On this date in 1984, the Tigers clinched the American League East title, beating the Brewers 3-0.
Randy O’Neal pitched seven shutout innings, allowing four hits, one walk and striking out six. As he often did, Willie Hernandez earned a two-inning save, his 30th of the year.
Tom Brookens hit a solo homer off Brewers’ starter Bob McClure. Lance Parrish drove in Detroit’s other two runs.
If you want to take a deep dive into the ’84 club, pickup a copy of Detroit Tigers 1984: What a Start! What a Finish! from Amazon.com. (Disclosure: I wrote the bios of Rusty Kuntz, Johnny Grubb, Chet Lemon and Carl Willis that appear in the book.)
A few years ago, I was offered a chance to contribute to a book about the 1984 World Series Champion Tigers – the team of my high school years and a team for the ages.
What an incredible experience it was to write four player biographies for the book and, along the way, talk with two former Tigers that played crucial roles for that club.
If you’d have told me in 1984 that some day I’d talk on the phone with Johnny Grubb or I’d sit in the Royals’ spring training clubhouse talking to Rusty Kuntz, I’m not sure I could’ve conjured up a plausible scenario where those events would’ve come together.
From the book’s cover:
Detroit Tigers 1984: What a Start! What a Finish!, an effort by the society of American Baseball research’s BioProject Committee, brings together biographical profiles of every Tiger from that magical season, plus those of field management, top executives, the broadcasters — even venerable Tiger Stadium and the city itself. A team of more than 40 writers and editors compiled the biographies and supporting essays that make up the most comprehensive look at this remarkable team.
Order the book for yourself or for a Tigers fan that wants to relive a magical season.
(For what it’s worth, I don’t get a commission on any sales.)