Monday, March 26, 2012

Bar ordered to stop selling 'Leyland smoking' t-shirts

Jim Leyland's style and personality seems to fit the city of Detroit quite well. Some people love Leyland for bringing the Detroit Tigers from the abyss into one of the top teams in the American League.

The Dirty Trick bar in Detroit also thinks so highly of Leyland that they've started selling a t-shirt of Leyland's mug with a cigarette dangling out the side of his mouth. A creative idea for sure, except that the Tigers don't think so.

The shirts were being sold for $22 at the bar Sunday night, but owner Louis Colombo said Monday he might halt sales because of a legal dilemma with the team. Colombo, 42, said a member of the Tigers legal counsel called him Monday afternoon and said the bar is expected to receive a cease-and-desist order this week.

Tigers officials appear to have a problem with the Old English D logo being used because it resembles their trademarked team logo, as well as the image the shirt portrays, Colombo said.

Colombo, however, claims the shirt is intended to honor Leyland's colorful personality and his success as manager of this gritty, sports-crazed town.

"There's nothing negative about it," said Colombo, a married father of seven children from Grosse Pointe Park. "I think Jim Leyland is amazing, that's why I did it. Besides Sparky Anderson, he's my favorite Tigers manager. I just thought that if I were to do a Tigers shirt, I would have to put Jim Leyland's face on it." 

Colombo has offered to tweak the Old English D so that he can continue selling the shirt. I would hope that the Tigers would let this pass and let Colombo continue selling the shirts at the bar. Or at least they could come together and give all profits to charity.

That would be a good idea.