A couple years ago, when the Tigers were shaping up to be a mediocre team—though with a well-outside shot at being juuuuust good enough to eke into a Wild Card race—I got hammered on twitter by a vocal segment of fans for “rooting against the best interests of the team” because I wasn’t actively clamoring for losses.
I was just trying to set them up to fail! I wasn’t a good fan! I didn’t know baseball! If I really knew baseball/cared about the Tigers/was a good fan/etc., I’d be praying for the team to tank so they’d get a better draft pick! Apparently I wielded a great amount of power over the team on the field! Wish I’d only realized this sooner so I could have turned them into a World Series winner.
Now, I’m not saying I fail to see the benefit in “tanking,” by any means. Sometimes, it’s far more advantageous for a team to just be really bad as opposed to mediocre. We’ve been saying that about the Red Wings for a couple years now.
However, I like winning. I like not being bad. I like having fun. Losing, especially prolonged periods of losing? It sucks. It’s not fun at all. I’ve endured it already—decades of it—in my 20+ years as a Tigers fan. All those miserable years when the Tigers were the laughingstock of baseball? Not fun at all.
“It will just make the return to competitiveness that much more satisfying!” Buddy, I lived through 2003-2006. I know what that feels like. I really don’t care to go through that kind of abject misery again just to know winning is satisfying. I don’t need to be reminded of how unenjoyable terrible baseball is so that I can properly appreciate a winning team.
I want the Tigers to keep winning games because winning is fun and I like having fun. Simple as that.
Also, if they keep winning, fans’ heads will explode and that’s always fun too.