About a month ago, I finally read Tom Stanton’s The Final Season, which chronicles the news writer-publisher’s plan to see all 81 home games during the 1999 season at Tiger Stadium.
Stanton’s record of all 81 home games is inter-cut with stories of his family; painting a picture of a multi-generational love affair with a sport, a team and of course, a stadium. The author spend much of his time at the stadium talking, both famous and otherwise. He hears many of the same stories, before understanding how and why a place becomes more than just a ballpark.
I’m not sure how many fans outside of Detroit, or outside of Tiger fans more to the point, can appreciate a premise such as this. However, as Michigan native and a lifelong Tiger fan, I instantly connected with this story. Thousands, if not millions, of fans have been lucky enough to pass through the turn styles at Tiger Stadium, and therefore, can appreciate the full scope of this story. For that matter, any fan with deep feelings of any team can at least relate and find his an enjoyable read.
Recommended to any passionate sports fans; but particularly to Tiger fans.