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I always fine this first trade deadline as one of the most interesting times of year. Rarely do they live up to expectations, but teams make their last ditch effort to pick up that one last piece for the home stretch. In 1987, the Tigers dealt for Doyle Alexander as they were trying to catch the Blue Jays. And it worked out that season, as he went 9-0 with a 1.54 ERA, helping the Tigers beat the Blue Jays in a division race that went down to the end.

The Twins ended up beating the Tigers in the AL Championship, but the trade helped create my favorite final two months of the season. Of course now, the trade is condemned because as we all know, the guy we traded away was John Smoltz, a perenial all star.

So I pose this question. Had the Tigers won the World Series back in 1987, would this trade be considered a good one?

Which leads us to this years trade deadline. Other teams have to make similar decisions, sacraficing a potential future star for a shot at a World Championship. The Tigers find themselves on the other side of the fence now. Since the All Star Break, the Tigers have been unable to win a series, and now find themselves still in fourth place, and ten games back. They’re almost as many games back of the third place Indians now as they were out of first place at the break.

So, in the course of two weeks, the Tigers have gone from potential buyers, to sellers. Word on the street says that Urbina’s stock is way down. At this point though, trading him for anything with potential would be worthwhile. Mike Maroth is a more interesting play though. Everyone could use a left handed starter. As much as I like Maroth, he doesn’t throw hard, so if we got a nice deal, I’m all for it. I’d be looking to shop Alex Sanchez with the emergence of Nook Logan, but his injury could prevent that.

So as always, over the course of the next couple of days, we’ll see. I doubt if there will be wholesale changes in the team, but I’d be upset if Dave Dombrowski sat pat.

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