Our Daily Dread: Can we squeeze a little quiet time into the Tigers’ home opener?


The San Diego Padres wouldn’t have done it. Neither would have the St. Louis Cardinals.

Red Sox Nation, with all them practicing Catholics, would have seen this coming years ago and made some noise about it already.

The Detroit Tigers, apparently, just figured out that its home opener on April 11 at 1 p.m. — on Good Friday — wasn’t such great planning for the Catholic community.


Forget the fact that there’s so much hot dogs and peanut eating at the ballyard on that special Friday before Easter. No fish?

The separation between church and state-of-the-art ballparks came to light when the Catholics of Detroit started to show some outward concern that, as much as they are baseball fans, they’re bigger fans of the big picture, and would rather be in church from noon to 3 p.m. on that day, as they are committed to each year.

Or maybe it’s not that big a deal. Most Tiger fans would consider it a good Friday if the team just won the game.


Wonder how Ty Cobb would have handled this “controvery.”

The Catholics that I know seem to be a forgiving bunch. It’s kind of part of the membership rules.

But from we know about Tigers is that former owner Tom Monaghan (the Dominos Pizza guy) is a devout Catholic. He had some kind of religious awakening and built a community in Florida where condoms and birth control pills are not allowed to be sold in drug stores. He must think his former team has gone to hell.

I’m reading a Detroit Tigers webbloger named Bill Ferris (linked here) who was quoted in the Detroit Free-Press story that originally came out with situation (linked here).

“I don’t view this as a controversy. I didn’t call foul or complain in any way. I was interviewed as a Catholic and a Tigers fan and what my plans were for the day. I didn’t view this is a controversy or something controversial. I’m not pushing the Tigers to change the time of the game, nor did I ever even think to suggest it as a possibility. I’m not even upset about the fact that the game was scheduled when it was.

“I have been to 13 consecutive Opening Days with my friends. I’m also a practicing Catholic. With the game falling on the afternoon of Good Friday it does create a personal conflict for me. But it is a conflict that I need to work through and I wouldn’t expect the Tigers or MLB to try and accommodate me in this regard.

“I’m posting about it here because, well, I can. This turned out to be much more controversial than I ever imagined.”

Yeah, talk to Shawn Green about that one. It was commendable when he was with the Dodgers and choose to observe Yom Kipper, even though every year it fell in the middle of a September pennant race. Alan Schwarz, on NPR’s “All Things Considered,” did a piece back on ’04 on it (linked here) that explains it better.

You can expect these kinds of things to get a little overblown by those who seize the opportunity to do such.

Headlines that say “Catholics criticize Tigers’ Good Friday opener” miss the point that every team plays that day — a night game — except the Tigers and Rangers.

Oh, well.

That’s more bad business than worth screaming about an injustice.

The Associated Press rewrite of the story says that the Tigers have “upset some” Catholics who are “unhappy” with the start time.

A story on FoxSports.com includes an instant poll: Should the Tigers change the start of the game. It’s a 50/50 split from more than 3,800 voters. There’s no similiar poll on FoxNews.com, but we’d be more interested to see how that one fell.

At the Vatican’s official website (linked here), put “Detroit Tigers” in the search engine and there’ll be no documents found. There aren’t any for the “New Jersey Devils” either, but …

Pope Benedict XVI may have a comment sometime down the road if someone deems it necessary. But that would be like Barack Obama taking time out of his busy schedule to do an NCAA Tournament bracket. I don’t see that happening.

Comment here or at thomas.hoffarth@dailynews.com.

Facebook Twitter Plusone Digg Reddit Stumbleupon Tumblr Email