OAKLAND -- Sorry, but Prince Fielder isn't buying the idea that the Tigers lineup is pressing. He might be in the minority, but he's public with his opinion.
Where someone else might see a lineup that's showing stress under the expectations of a potential 1,000-run season, Fielder sees an excuse.
"That's just what people call it when you're not getting the job done. That's all," Fielder said Saturday.
Whether or not Fielder is pressing, he's slumping. He has plenty of company in that, up and down the Tigers lineup.
With Miguel Cabrera's recent spate of hits, the longest active hitless streak on the Tigers heading into Monday's game against the White Sox belonged to Fielder, 0-for-22 since Tuesday's tape-measure home run at Seattle. He reached base safely four times that night before striking out in the ninth inning.
According to research on baseball-reference.com, it's the longest hitless streak of Fielder's Major League career.
The last three games have been particularly difficult for Fielder, with five strikeouts in 13 at-bats. He flew out to the warning track in left-center field on Friday night against lefty Tommy Milone.
When Leyland was asked about Fielder Sunday morning, he said Fielder was "scuffling." He did not say pressing, and he understood why Fielder wouldn't.
"I think that's a legitimate point," Leyland said. "I mean, only a player -- not just him, but any particular -- knows if they're trying too hard. Sometimes you can see signs of it as a manager, but only the player truly knows for sure if they're just fighting or trying too hard."
Asked how pressuring would show up at the plate, Leyland said it would usually be a struggle in picking up the ball.
Fielder just chalks it up to a lack of execution.
"It's always easy to say you're pressing when it doesn't happen," Fielder said, "but you're just trying to get it done. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't."