07/07/05 4:11 PM ET
Motor City revved up for All-Star Game
By Patrick Mooney / MLB.com
The Tigers organization anticipates more than 250,000 people will take part in the All-Star events running July 8-12. In addition, more than 100 million people in 220 countries are expected to follow the game on television or radio, or at MLB.com.
"As you can imagine, the Detroit Tigers organization is quite excited about what's to take place here," president and general manager Dave Dombrowski said last week. "Everybody within the city of Detroit, our region and the state of Michigan are about to have the thrill of a lifetime."
Though baseball provides the backdrop, the All-Star activities represent an opportunity to showcase the city. Fans looking for diversions outside of baseball can visit the Detroit Zoo, several local casinos and a slew of museums and theaters, including the Detroit Institute of the Arts and the Henry Ford Museum.
"This is a chance for Detroit to highlight what goes on in the city in the summertime," Detroit mayor Kwame Kilpatrick told MLB.com in late April. "When people think about Detroit, they think about winter. They think it's winter all year long. This is our time to show this is a baseball town, that we have a baseball history."
Detroit last hosted the All-Star Game at Tiger Stadium in 1971, when Reggie Jackson famously crushed a ball off the light tower topping the right-field roof.
Comerica Park, which opened on April 11, 2000, features a new set of targets for the sluggers competing in the Midsummer Classic and the Home Run Derby. It also offers fans a range of attractions, including a ferris wheel, exhibits on Tigers baseball and several bars and restaurants.
As it stands, the city will share the spotlight with only one Tiger -- catcher Ivan Rodriguez, the lone Detroit player selected to the American League squad.
"Pudge is the face of the Tigers. He has been since he's been here," manager Alan Trammell said. "He's a guy that will represent us very, very well."
Patrick Mooney is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.