Luke Waltons Forehead presented by the Sports Dude.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006 at 11:33 AM

Baseball is back.

The winter has ended
and spring is now here,
the smell of the snow
is replaced by that of warm beer.
Hot dogs, nachos, pretzels,
the vendor man yells,
no matter how pricey
somehow that junk sells.
A $5 hot and nasty
somehow goes to $10 at the park,
but does that really matter?
On a new season we now embark.
The manager preaches
"You gotta play smart ball!"
But do the players listen
as another routine fly falls?
Or how about that off season?
What old player did we get?
You gotta love Illitch
for overpaying for those vets.
The minors were once empty
like the vastness of the Sahara,
but some promise now shines
in the names of Verlander & Zumaya.
From Polanco to Guillen,
Pudge, Maggs and Young,
Monroe, Shelton, Inge -
if healthy they can score some runs.
But will the pitching hold?
Will Bonderman emerge as the ace?
Will Rogers be a bust?
Will we be in the playoff race?
All hope springs eternal
as each season starts anew,
for the faithful in the "D"
that hope is all we do.
Hope for the playoffs,
hell we'll even take .500,
after 12 losing seasons
can't you give us something?
But make no mistake
this is a baseball town,
& that hope still remains
they'll turn this thing around.
So get out that pine tar,
put on your eye black,
the boys of summer have returned -
baseball is back.

The sports dude.

Monday, March 27, 2006 at 10:49 AM

Joey to KC? Pena cut? Pistons lose? Monday Madness.

First, let us talk to the Lions and this little article that I found in the Kansas City Star. No, I am not a total geek, actually the radio was talking about it this morning and I hunted for the article and found it. Look, if this were true and I were Millen, I would do whatever it takes to get this deal done. I mean, I figured the only team that would truly be interested in Joey was maybe the Detroit Demolition or something? Sorry, I shouldn't insult the Demolition like that, they deserve better. All kidding aside I figured that, at best, they would get a fifth or maybe a sixth rounder for him, even a fourth rounder would be a stretch. Yes the key to the deal with KC is Joey restructuring his deal but I swear if I was Millen I would do everything in my power to beg and plead with Joey to restructure his deal. I understand that the ball is in Joey's court, if he just waits to get cut so he can go wherever he wants then if I were the Lions I would wait until the last second in June to cut him. Then all the spots would be most likely filled and then his options are slim at best. But if he works with the Lions then at least he can go somewhere now and be guaranteed a back up job come next season. The ball is in your court Joey, but I definitely would play along a little if I was you.

The Tigers cut Carlos Pena this weekend, all but giving up on him a couple seasons too late if you ask me. I take this as a good sign and I will tell you why - because it means the Tigers are finally not in "we don't have anyone else, we may as well let him be out there" mode with players now, they have developed some depth and some guys that can compete. We all knew that it would take a miracle for Pena to beat out Shelton and by hitting .161 this spring (or whatever it ended up being!) he did himself no favors. Does this mean the Tigers are going to finally make the playoffs? No, I do not want to go that far, but I do take it as a good sign because, to me, it means the cupboard is finally a little less bare than it has been in the past.

The Pistons lost an ugly game last night to the Nets, their 16 game home win streak snapped in the process, but to me it is not a huge concern. Why? Because it is finally nice to see that defense back as the playoffs get closer and that is what is going to get them through the playoffs more than the new offensive style they run. I think right now they are just in one of those funks where they are working more on their defense than their offense and are trying to find that happy medium like they had earlier in the season. Hey, better now than in the Eastern Conference Finals with the Heat right? Well, that is, if the Heat make it that far.

That is it folks, have a nice Monday and we will talk again later - peace! The sports dude.

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