Okay, so he's not Manny. Manny's hair seems to have infinite amounts of hits in it (of course, we now know what else is in it.) Not Vlad's. His hair had become an albatross. A liability. An anchor.
It had turned a power hitter into David Eckstein.
Fooled me. I actually thought it was because Vlad swung at every pitch like he was on deadline. I thought it was because he was so off balance after every swing, he looked like an ice skater about to fall on their you know what. I thought it was because Vlad seemed to think that adjustments were things only for car mechanics.
But it was the hair. There were no more hits left in the hair.
Who knew? He looked like the old Vladdy. Hair flying, bat wailing. But there was no more pop. No more punch. No more power. Vlad was one step away from batting behind Aybar in the line-up. Teams were walking Hunter just to get to Vlad.
The man tied with Lou Gehrig for most consecutive seasons batting .300 with 25 or more homers was being welcomed at the plate like an automatic out. He was worse than that. He was TWO automatic outs. Vlad hit into so many double plays, you could start heading to the refrigerator as soon as he came to the plate.
But no more. Now the anchor has been lifted. The smile is back. The power has returned.
The hair is gone. And hopefully, so is the rest of the American League West.