“For some Catholics and other Christians in southeast Michigan, the Detroit Tigers™ home opener this year will be off-limits,” writes a pious Kathleen Grey of the Detroit Free Press. “The 1:05 p.m. game against the Texas Rangers is on April 10 ” Good Friday and one of the holiest days on the Christian calendar.” Slightly holier than Jim Leyland’s thrice-weekly trips to the dog track, at least.
That™s the day for somber reflection, personal sacrifice, church services that run from noon to 3 p.m. and a no-meat pledge, which doesn™t lend itself to downing a hot dog or two at the game.
While all 30 Major League teams are playing that day, only the Tigers are taking the field during the Christian holy hours. It’s a schedule that keeps the weather and tradition in mind, said Tigers’ spokesman Ron Colangelo.
“Major League Baseball has a monumental task of putting together the schedule for the entire season,” he said. “Fans have come to know that our home opener is always a day game.”
And the Tigers point out that there are plenty of vegetarian offerings on the concession menus. Last year, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals named Comerica Park one of the Top 10 vegetarian friendly stadiums in baseball.
Michael Ochab, 47, will miss his first opener in 20 years, choosing to attend services at St. Florian Catholic Church in Hamtramck, instead.
“It’s sort of an insult for Catholics,” he said. “I’m still hoping the Tigers will change the time.”