Detroit — This year, every Tiger will be "Mr. Tiger".
Or, at least, every Tiger will pay homage to Mr. Tiger.
The Tigers unveiled the No. 6 patch they will wear on their sleeves during the shortened 2020 season, which kicks off Friday night in Cincinnati. The patch, of course, is in memory of Hall-of-Famer Al Kaline, who died April 6 at the age of 85.
Kaline, who had suffered a stroke, died during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, keeping the Tigers from holding a public ceremony.
The Tigers have said they will have a public memorial of some sort when possible. It might not happen until next season, given no fans will attend MLB games during the 2020 regular season.
Kaline spent 67 seasons with the Tigers organization, from his major-league debut at age 18 in 1953 until his death, when he was working in the team's front office. Kaline also spent many years as an analyst on Tigers' television broadcasts.
Kaline's No. 6 was retired by the Tigers in 1980, the year he was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Kaline played 22 seasons in the majors, all with Detroit, batting .297 with 399 home runs and 1,582 RBIs. He's a member of the 3,000-hit club, made the All-Star team in 15 seasons, and won 10 Gold Gloves.
The Tigers last wore a memorial patch during the 2017 season, following the death of team owner Mike Ilitch.