I have no inside information to add here but I figured I would weigh in on the various trade rumors spreading across the net. From what I gather, Dave Dombrowski is aggressively pursuing both starting pitchers and hitters. That doesn't mean he'll find an appropriate match before the deadline on Friday but, from all accounts, he would like to do something.
Could they get both a starting pitcher and a bat? It sounds as if they want to keep Scott Sizemore (their potential starting second baseman in 2010), Alex Avila (possibly their starting catcher by 2011) and Casey Crosby (their top pitching prospect not already on the Major League roster). That leaves them with Cale Iorg, Wilkin Ramirez, Ryan Strieby (who is currently injured), Casper Wells and a host of pitchers - Alfredo Figaro, Cody Satterwhite, Luis Marte, Mauricio Robles, Brett Jobsen, etc - as potential trade bait. If that's the case, I doubt that will be enough to make two major acquisitions.
Should they go after a hitter or a pitcher? Offense is the more glaring need but the pitching targets may be more substantial upgrades than available position players. It will ultimately depend on how well they match up with potential trading partners though.
Possible pitchers include Jarrod Washburn of the Mariners and Zach Duke of the Pirates and Doug Davis and Jon Garland of the Arizona Diamonbacks. Washburn is the name I've seen most frequently connected with the Tigers but it's hard to know where the Mariners stand. They are 7 1/2 games out of first so they would seem to be sellers. However, they traded away catcher Jeff Clement and other prospects to acquire veteran shortstop Jack Wilson today. That doesn't look like a seller move but it's possible it was made with an eye towards 2010. Any of the pitchers would help out a rotation which currently features two unreliable youngsters in Rick Porcello and Lucas French.
As we all know, Roy Halladay is available too but I'm pretty sure he is not going to be a Tiger. It would likely cost them Rick Porcello and a few other top prospects and I don't think Dombrowski wants to do that. He also costs $15 million per year and their budget is reportedly already taxed.
Possible position players include outfielders Adam Dunn and Josh Willingham of the Nationals and Luke Scott of the Orioles. Dunn seems to be the most popular choice among Tigers fans but I don't think he fits on a team with Carlos Guillen currently locked in at DH. I'd be all for Dunn as a DH but, if he has to play left field, he'll give up almost as many runs with his glove as he produces with his bat. Scott and Willingham seem like more reasonable options, although they'll both likely be costly. I've heard Cody Ross mentioned too but the Marlins are still in the playoff hunt so that's unlikely.
Any of the above will be expensive - probably two or three of their best prospects. I believe it would be worth it for a first place team to make a move though. It's not every year the Tigers have a shot at post-season. I'd prefer a hitter but the best deal might be a pitcher. I'd take either.
The cutoff man podcast - An interview with Danny Knobler by Scott Warheit.
Seattle Times - The most talked about rumor of the day (Washburn).
Detroit News - Lynn Henning's thoughts.
Bless You Boys - Ian discusses Washburn