The History Of The Detroit Tigers

January 25, 2011
Detroit Tigers
by The Library of Congress

The Detroit Tigers were established in 1896 and were one of the charter members of the American League. In their history, they have won the World Series four times (1935, 1945, 1968, and 1984). In addition to their World Series titles, they have won 10 AL Pennants.

They are one of four charter AL teams that still play in the same city, with the Boston Red Sox, Chicago White Sox, and Cleveland Indians being the others. Furthermore, the Tigers were a part of the Western League, which was the AL’s minor league forerunner.  The Tigers are the only team remaining from the Western League that still plays in its same city under the same name.

In 1905, the Tigers acquired outfielder Ty Cobb.  Cobb would go on to have one of the most decorated careers in baseball history, setting several records that still stand today.  He played for the Tigers for 22 seasons, with the final 6 as player-manager.

Cobb helped lead the Tigers to three AL pennants.  All three times, the Tigers lost in the World Series.  They returned to the World Series in 1934, losing to the St. Louis Cardinals in seven games.  They repeated as AL champions the following year, advancing to face the Chicago Cubs in the 1935 World Series.  The Tigers were able to beat the Cubs in six games for their first World Series in franchise history.  Game 6 was won by the gutsy pitching of Tommy Bridges and the clutch hitting of left fielder Goose Goslin.

The storied franchise enjoyed arguably their greatest season in 1984 when they won a league high 104 games. They were in first place in their division for the entire season.  They swept the Kansas City Royals in the AL Championship to advance to the World Series where they faced the San Diego Padres.  They went on to defeat the Padres, 4 games to 1, for their first World Series in 16 years.

In 2003, Detroit made history in a way they would have preferred not to.  With a record of 43-119, the Tigers set the AL record for losses in a year.  They came within one loss of tying the New York Mets for the most losses in Major League history.  Poor pitching and hitting contributed to the poor record, as the pitching staff had an ERA of 5.30 and the batters averaged an anemic .240.

The 2003 record-setting season took place in a time period where the Tigers had become synonymous with losing.  They had not had a winning season since 1993 and were written off as playoff contenders early in the season.

In 2006, the Tigers fortunes changed.  After a typical slow start, the Tigers seemed to be ignited by manager Jim Leyland’s tirade in which he berated his team for its lack of effort.  The Tigers went on to win 95 games, good enough for a wild card birth in the playoffs.  After defeating the Oakland Athletics in the AL Championship Series, they Tigers advanced to their first World Series since 1984.  They would eventually lose in five games to the St. Louis Cardinals in the World Series.

While the Tigers have not enjoyed any playoff success since their trip to the World Series in 2006, they are a completely different franchise from the perennial loser that was always predicted to finish last in their division.  This year is no different.  As the 2010 season begins, expectations are night and day different from what they were eight years ago.

Alexa Morris writes reviews on various sporting events including the online sportsbook websites. In this piece of write up she highlights on various MLB teams and baseball betting.She takes the readers opinion on how to bet on baseball online.

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