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A Pep Talk for Justin Verlander

Something is wrong with Verlander this year. I try to help!

David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

(Once again I asked other members of the Fake Teams crew to recommend someone who needed a pep talk. The resounding result?  Justin Verlander. Here we go!)

Mr. Verlander:

I come here today not to yell at you, or tell you how much you have sucked this season. No, not at all. I am here to turn around your season through part-hypnosis/part-encouragement/part-love. You see, we at Fake Teams don't hate on a player when he is down, but love on him so much that he gets the confidence and swagger back.

Thanks to a system I have perfected since its inception in April, I have helped world-class players such as Darwin Barney and Miguel Cabrera get their mojo back. Just listen to me and we will be fine.

The first step in my system is to accept the fact that you have been outright horrible. Your 6-7 record and 4.98 ERA is Glendon Rusch-like. Remember him?  You probably don't. I'm the only one who remembers him. (FYI: he sucked. Majorly!)

So I will go ahead and figure that you have accepted the fact you have sucked. GOOD FOR YOU!  You are on the right track.

The next step?  Finding the pain spot. Sales people (read: jerks) talk about finding the pain spot in potential clients all the time. What is bothering you?  Is it not being able to see Jim Leyland's amazing body every day in the locker room?  Are you still reeling from last years playoff loss to the Red Sox?  What hurts, Justin?

After finding out what hurts, the cure can be simple. Missing Leyland's presence?  Light up a bunch of cheap cigarettes in your car and let the fumes take over.

I feel, though, that something else might be bothering you. Your lack of heat on your fastball reminds me of Luis Gonzalez post-2001. Did the totally legal drugs you were taking wear off?  You are a standup guy, in the same form as Andy Pettite. I am sure you are clean. Did you simply just let your prescription run out?  I have done that a few times on my anxiety medicine and, oh boy, the people at Smith & Wollenskys Steak House did not take kind to me showing up nude and yelling out, "The foot-long sausage is now for sale!"  That was a bad night, although I did earn a LOT of dates.

Anyway, once you find the problem and cure, there is the restitution to your teammates. You owe them for a lot. Buy Cabrera some steak sandwiches, Melvin Mercedes ironically a Fiat and Phil Coke...well, he owes everyone else on the team so forget about him.

To make amends with Brad Ausmus, buy him a sense of humor.

To make amends with Tigers fans, restore downtown Detroit into something better than current-day Crimea.

For all of your fantasy owners, take them all out one night and introduce them to actual people who have actual conversations. Oh, and set up a or profile for them. God knows they need it.

Lastly, remember that no matter how bad your season is going, always know that it isn't as bad as my main man Victor Coustan's is going.  He's 3-11 to start this 12 and under season. If I know my boy Victor, it isn't because of his pitching or hitting, but due to his teammates' lolly gagging. Seriously, get it together, Victor's teammates. Don't make me come up there and personally give a pep talk to each one of you. You don't want that.


In conclusion, Mr. Verlander, just get your amazing pitching form back. A bunch of lonely guys living in their parents' basement while wasting time playing World of Warcraft are counting on you!