Of course, having grown up in New York City, but having spent the past 34 years in Michigan, my interest was piqued in the ALCS: this wasn't just my favorite game, but a match-up of my two favorite teams. I'd be happy no matter which one moved on to the big show!
But I have to admit, I was really rooting for the Tigers ... :)
Because even someone as verbose and effusive as I am can't adequately describe what this means to Detroit.
In New York, it's expected that an enormously talented and exorbitantly costly team will take its division, earn a pennant, and not just get to - but win - the World Series. When this doesn't happen, there is no worse city in which to endure the fans' wrath.
In Detroit, however, there is great happiness when a trip to the postseason comes, rather than a sense of entitlement. There is enormous pride, and nothing is taken for granted. That the Tigers took down, and shut down, the force that is the Yankees was something everyone hoped for and talked about and celebrated. People who aren't particularly interested in baseball even found themselves watching the games and cheering. The enthusiasm was contagious.
New York has split loyalties: Yankees fans, Mets fans, and those who still haven't forgiven the Dodgers for leaving Brooklyn. But in Detroit, there's one team. And the entire city - the entire state - is so thrilled for them!
Often, there's not good news coming from Detroit. But throughout the postseason, visitors and viewers have also seen a new city - one with a vibrant arts scene, a thriving farmers' market, fabulous restaurants, urban gardens, and renovated neighborhoods that hip kids in their 20s and 30s are moving into and revitalizing. All of this will be on display as Detroit welcomes the World Series, and the world.
This trip to the final round of the postseason wasn't a fluke - the spot was earned. This was a matter of hard work, not mere luck. The Tigers have come back from some dismal days, just as their city itself is doing.
Remember, as the famous Chrysler ad, "Imported From Detroit," states:
This isn't New York City or the Windy City or Sin City,
and we're certainly no one's Emerald City.
This is the Motor City. And this is what we do.
We play baseball. We sweep a team whose payroll tops $200 million and which features many future Hall of Fame members. We bring hope and joy to a city that deserves - and needs - it.
And we represent the American League in the World Series tonight ... :)
Vernors is a sweet, spicy ginger ale made in Detroit. It's only fitting to make a treat for tonight's game using this iconic product that represents the vitality of the city!
- 1-1/2 cups flour
- 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 3/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ginger
- 3/4 cup Vernors
- 6 tablespoons butter, melted
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 eggs
Preheat oven to 350F. Line 15 muffin cups with paper liners.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, sugar, brown sugar, salt, and ginger. In a measuring cup, combine the Vernors, butter, vanilla, and eggs; whisk together.
Pour liquid ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients, and stir to combine. Divide the batter among the lined cups, and bake for 20 minutes until a tester comes out clean. Let cool completely.
- 2 tablespoons butter, softened
- 1/4 cup Trader Joe's cookie butter
- 3-1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
- 7 tablespoons Vernors
In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat together the butter and cookie butter. On low speed, beat in the confectioners' sugar; then beat in the Vernors.
Spread frosting over cupcakes.
Makes 15 cupcakes.