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Like Stripes On the Fur Coat of a Tiger - 07/13

I'm not sure why it didn't occur to me to answer the nine 10 questions I had about the Tigers in the second half. But Kurt answered them over at Mack Avenue Tigers, and challenged me to do the same. So I'll pick up the gauntlet he threw down, but probably not today. Though I might inadvertently do so below...

UPDATE: Big Al's joined in the fun. Okay, I get the message. I've been blog tagged.

I'm a day late on this, but after reading the article about Chris Shelton in yesterday's Detroit News, a thought occurred to me: Is he the hitting version of Rick Ankiel?

Maybe there's really no comparison between a pitcher who suddenly can't throw a strike and a hitter who can't stop chasing breaking balls. But from my layman's perspective, it seems we're talking about similar mental blocks. Shelton is so messed up that Leon Durham says he has a "Diana Ross swing."

Durham has found Shelton often has what he describes as a Diana Ross swing: "It goes inside out with any extension."
I'm no hitting coach, but I'd advise Shelton to stop swinging like Diana Ross. I saw Lady Sings the Blues. She couldn't hit the curveball. Billy Dee Williams, on the other hand...

You know you have a winning team in town (and all the other sports are on hiatus) when a piece about players' superstitions is in the Detroit News. But this was pretty amusing, whether it was Curtis Granderson taking hitting advice from Tim Byrdak or Nate Robertson describing Sean Casey's dietary preferences:

"It looked like seaweed liquid," he said. "It's got sea kelp in it or something, seaweed. There's stuff in it like mustard greens -- I probably normally don't get my mustard greens every day, you know. Kale leaf, I don't even know what kale leaf is."
Ooof. I'll bet you can really taste the kale. And how long do you have to brush your teeth to get that green out? Maybe Nate could have a V-8 instead.

Inspired by The Daily Fungo doing some snooping on Brad Lidge, I checked out Richard Justice's blog to see what he might have to say on the Astros trading off some assets.

He might be the most sought-after player leading up to the trade deadline. Boston, Cleveland and Detroit all have him at or near the top of their wish list. Others surely want him, too. Tim Purpura could get a first-rate prospect for Chad Qualls and perhaps Dan Wheeler. [...]

It's Brad Lidge that could bring the most in terms of prospects. He's worth at least two. It's also Lidge that will be Tim Purpura's toughest decision. First, there are the emotional ties. At one point in his minor league career, Lidge was so discouraged that he was ready to quit and return to college. It was Tim Purpura who convinced him to keep going.

Justice (who doesn't think the Astros should trade Lidge) goes on to list two other reasons this will be tough for the Astros: 1) They need to figure out if the team really needs a overhaul, and 2) Purpura might not be the kind of general manager who can get teams bidding against one another for one of his players. He's gotten hosed in his other two big trades.

And I hope I don't offend anyone by saying this, but I really thought we'd heard the last from Frank Rashid. The Freep's Michael Rosenberg found him, however, and the man just doesn't follow the Tigers anymore. On one hand, I respect that he's sticking to his guns on the Tiger Stadium issue. But on the other, I feel sorry for the guy. I think we've all become disenchanted over one thing or another in our lives.