Detroit Tigers: Tony LaRussa is taking a cue from the Last Dance

The Detroit Tigers and Chicago White Sox are taking a cue from their NBA counterparts and bringing back a classic motivational technique.

As far as Chicago and Detroit go in terms of sports rivalries, there is no love lost between the two Midwestern cities. The Chicago Bulls and the Detroit Pistons were bitter enemies during the rise of the Michael Jordan era and there have been moments between the Detroit Tigers and the Chicago White Sox, which I will circle back to in a few.

If you watched ESPN’s 30 for 30 “The Last Dance”, the documentary on the Chicago Bulls’ championship run of the ’90s,  you saw Jordan throughout the series felt when he was disrespected, he used that for fuel to wielded himself into the right mindset.

In yesterday’s makeup game, Jose Abreu was hit in the elbow for the 22nd time this season, which prompted this play.

Jason Beck points out the next fact here that seemly was overlooked. The Tigers have not hit Abreu since 2019.

While I can understand the frustration of Jose Abreu of teams hitting him, this quote from Tony LaRussa had elements of how Jordan approaches his competition whenever he felt slighted.

Oh, great, another “Detroit sucks”  post.

I wanted to take 24 hours or so before posting this because when I saw this post, I just shook my head because it is one of the most overplayed statements of all time among the cities in the Midwest.

Civic pride, I get it, your city sucks, my city rules, blah, blah, blah.  Sometimes it’s fun but in this case, manager A.J. Hinch and the rest of the team were just as surprised as the rest of us.

There was no ill intention. Period. The narrative seems to be pretty clear but it appears this weekend in Chicago, the tempers will be flaring but hopefully not to the level witnessed on April 22nd, 2000.

The account on Twitter, “GlassHalfFulmer” reminded me of an ugly game between these two teams in which three separate fights occurred.

This flashback, ironically enough, happened on June 20th, 1980. Former Tiger Al Cowens went after White Sox pitcher Ed Farmer. The reason behind this was because Farmer hit Cowens with a pitch the year before and broke Cowens’s jaw. It was his revenge. Strangely enough, Tony LaRussa was the manager for Chicago, and even stranger, Lance Parrish was caught during this game and was a coach during the brawl game in 2000.

The Detroit Tigers and White Sox are prepping for 2022 and beyond.

The White Sox are loaded with talent and are not going anywhere soon. If Detroit can continue its progress from 2021 into the 2022 season,  this will make for a compelling AL Central battle for years to come.  The Tigers are not backing down and for the first time since perhaps the Twins in the late 2000’s or the Toronto Blue Jays in the ’80s, fans will be treated to an amped-up rivary.

LaRussa struck first with his quote for motivation to his ballclub. He wants his team healthy and rested for the postseason.  Hinch just wants to finish the season on a high note. Will get to the level of the Bulls and Pistons or even the Red Wings and Blackhawks? Time will tell.