Brandon Inge Enters Walk Year

Take a quick look at Brandon Inge's numbers and he doesn't seem that different from Pedro Feliz. They're both strong defensive third basemen in their early thirties who will give you an OPS close to .700. Feliz signed a $4.5MM deal with the Astros this offseason, but when Inge hits the market next winter, he can hope for a little more.

Granted, Inge strikes out about 30% of the time he steps up to hit. That limited his OBP (.314) and slugging (.406) last year, despite his 27 homers. But Inge saves about ten runs a year with his third base defense, and he can also catch and play all three outfield positions. Plus, Inge will be 33 when he hits free agency, a year younger than Feliz was this winter.

Mark DeRosa's versatility helped him land a two-year deal, even though he'll be 35 this season. Fellow 2011 free agents Feliz and Miguel Tejada are older than Inge and less versatile. There will be other competition, though. Garrett Atkins, Jorge Cantu and Adrian Beltre could all be free agents after the season.

Inge won't be the only Tiger whose contract is coming off the books. Jeremy Bonderman, Nate Robertson, Dontrelle Willis, Johnny Damon, Gerald Laird, Bobby Seay, Adam Everett and maybe even Magglio Ordonez will see their deals expire, too. That means the Tigers will have the flexibility to bring Inge back. Even if they choose not to, he should have other suitors if he is productive in 2010.


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16 Comments on "Brandon Inge Enters Walk Year"


5 years 4 months ago

Haha, Brandon Inge and the word “walk” in the same sentence. I see what you did there.

Okay, his walk rate isn’t that bad but his .OBP isn’t good, it’s his BA that kills him there though. Even with the home runs he’s not terribly productive, some team will find a place for him given his versatility and defense but they shouldn’t expect much offensively. I think by now most people recognize what he is though, he shouldn’t surprise anyone. Descent player with significant holes in his game.

jphenix2002
5 years 4 months ago

haha, I thought that was funny too. Inge would need to stay healthy to generate any interest, and assuming he does prove he is healthy I imagine Detroit will find a way to keep him around.

tigers22
5 years 4 months ago

Depending on how they perform this year, the guy’s I’d want back would probably be Inge and Bonderman. I don’t know what Inge would get in the open market, but he’s but on the Tigers for awhile and I’d like to see him around for another year or two. That being said, as long as we don’t give him more than he’s worth. I think both sides could work out a fair deal.

This will be a make or break year for Bondo. I hope he can come back and put it all together, because that would be a huge boost for our rotation.

5 years 4 months ago

The Tigers could move Cabrera back to 3b next year and put one of the young tall sluggers–Boesch or Striebe–at first. That will save them about $5 million a year for a couple of years. Maybe Cabby will be able to throw better now that he is clean, lean and sober.

sammyd36
5 years 4 months ago

Miggy has turned into a plus at 1B, so no reason to move him. Inge is a fan favorite, though I have no idea why. He needs to be gone with the rest of the bad contracts that DD gave players after the ’06 season.

Oh, and I can’t stand “Cabby.” His nickname is Miggy. Why do we have to let FSN awful color-man Rod Allen create awful nicknames for people.

Joey
5 years 4 months ago

You mean you don’t like “G-Money”?

dtownwarrior
5 years 4 months ago

Rod Allen is the man, quit hatin! How can you not love Hot Rod? Rod and Mario compliment each other awesome and they are great to listen to.

Heliosphan
5 years 4 months ago

This seems to be a divisive issue as well in Tigertown. I dislike Rod Allen but my brother and friends love him.

Civilization
5 years 4 months ago

Brandon Inge can’t catch. Did you see his offensive numbers his catching year? An average just north of 200. I don’t imagine Inge will be leaving town. Not that he’s an ultra productive franchise player, or there won’t be better upgrades in the free agency… Ilitch is loyal to his guys. Inge will get a decent contract and he’ll stay in Detroit.

5 years 4 months ago

I decided to take a look at his splits…

He’s a .280 hitter when he hits lead-off (380 PA). Maybe he should be the lead-off hitter…LOL :)

5 years 4 months ago

I decided to take a look at his splits…

He’s a .280/.364/.402 hitter (380 PA) as a lead-off hitter. Maybe he should lead-off for the Tigers…LOL :)

dtownwarrior
5 years 4 months ago

Being a Tiger fan for quite some time now, this is a touchy subject that even mutual Tiger fans argue about. Brandon Inge has been through the AWFUL seasons (119 losses in 03) and I have basically watched him grow up in Detroit, but there is only so many times you can watch someone strike out or pop up with a RISP with less than 2 outs and be able to stomach it. You can say whatever you want about his glove, I know it’s awesome. As a matter of fact, if he could ever hit above .270 or so he may even have a few Gold Gloves already, but he can be absolutely miserable at the plate. He was tearing it up last year before his knees finally gave out, so this is the year that I’ve been waiting for. No health problems and no excuses. He got out of his bad habits and even made the All-Star squad last year, its time to put up if you want that even bigger contract. If he struggles again, you let him walk, plain and simple. If he has a big year, we will have the dough to pony up.

Heliosphan
5 years 4 months ago

Inge is a good player when he’s focused and healthy. He needs to learn that playing injured does not help his team. Also, he needs to be playing 3B. His offense is abysmal when he is catching.

alphabet_soup5
5 years 4 months ago

I highly doubt Inge will ever catch again unless it’s an emergency. If he stays healthy he can be productive enough to be worthy of a starting 3B role.

1st half: .268/.360/.515 with 21 HR
2nd half: .186/.260/.281 with 6 HR

Knee injuries plagued him the second half, and hopefully the surgery he had this offseason will keep him healthy.

He did play 161 games last year, and that might have been too much for him. There really is no replacement for him. Cabrera is getting much better at 1B and there’s no need to move him back to 3rd, and Raburn is horrible at 3rd. Only possibility I can see is Santiago or Larish. Santiago’s only logged 9 innings worth of 3B time, but all last season. And Larish isn’t really worthy of being on the 25-man roster.

Overall, hopefully Inge will remain healthy all season. If he can remain healthy, I can see a .250 average with 25 HR. However the Tigers do rely on him as their 3rd basemen, and if he needs some time off they don’t have a clear backup.

ZeroZeroZero
5 years 4 months ago

I think Brandon Inge is barely a MLB starter. He has some pop but it doesnt make up for how he is otherwise an offensive black hole. I also think that in his case his defensive stats are misleading. Nobody can lead the league in errors and be regarded as a great defender. It just doesnt make sense. Last year wasnt a fluke either since hes been 1st in errors in the AL for 3rd base every year hes been a starter there except for once when he was 2nd.

5 years 4 months ago

Well, just place your hopes on Daniel Fields and Gustavo Nunez. Danny Worth and Cale Iorg haven’t exactly developed as planned.