Still a catcher

Apparently when Inge was talking about the difficulties of hitting while having to focus on catching, he was talking about difficulties he’ll have to overcome, not difficulties he wants to avoid.

This was Tigers assistant GM Al Avila on XM Radio earlier today:

"Brandon came in actually today and talked to Jim [Leyland]. He felt that he was misquoted in the newspaper, things were taken out of context and he actually came in today and said that he’s willing to catch. From his point of view today, he’s expressing that the way that things that were written weren’t exactly the way he expressed it, he was just frustrated that one game but if he’s going to be with the Tigers he’ll be happy. At this point you can count on Brandon Inge being a Detroit Tiger and he’ll catch when we need him."

Does that mean he’ll be the backup when Wilson opens the season on the DL? (When an injured player no-comments you twice about how things are going, things aren’t going well.) I doubt Inge would be the only backup; more likely Sardinha will also be on the roster. It could, however, give them some flexibility. It also helps Inge’s trade value if he’s willing to do things like that.

For those rolling their eyes about Sardinha — and yes, the offense is just bad — Dontrelle Willis went out of his way to praise Sardinha for the way he called his three innings today, bringing it up when no one asked him about it.

"He did a great job back there," Willis said. "For a guy you’re new to, he did a great job handling me back there. For someone to know what your ball is going to do and what you’re good at on some days, he’s very good about recognizing that. He did a great job of recognizing what we wanted to work on."

Is he trying to give him a confidence boost? I doubt it; that’s usually the manager’s job. But I would expect you’ll get a long look at Sardinha in the next couple weeks before the Tigers’ off day March 19. Pudge will catch tomorrow at Disney.

8 Comments

Well I am not suprised, I felt like Brandon was probably taken out of context and I said as much the other day. I also heard on the radio that Brandon and this particular reporter don’t see eye to eye exactly?? So even they said you need to take some of it with a grain of salt.

When I first heard that about Vance and I heard that he said no comment, I was afraid that it was probably bad news. I kinda doubt that they would bring Sardinha to the big club, unless of course Brandon is traded (HOPE NOT) But anyway, I don’t think that they can afford to carry him on the club when Brandon is perfectly capable of being an excellent catcher. I am glad it is Leylands job and not mine to figure it out.

GO TIGERS

bleh…. inge needs to stop talking to the press if he’s gonna play the ‘misquoted,’ ‘misremembered,’ ‘misspoke,’ ‘miswhatever’ card…. mean what you say say what you mean. i am personally tired of hearing from our utility man. IMO, he’s doing this to keep his name floated around the clubhouse, the detroit news, and here and again, yahoo sports news……. but, like i said, thats MY OPINION…. lets not all jump on the I HATE YOU MIKE bandwagon because of an opinion.

trade him. please.

on a side note, i wish i could make 6.5 million for doing this a year, and by this, i mean, complaining without actually complaining.

That’s great news. I didn’t think what I had heard sounded like him, but who knows. Did he give people the impression that he wasn’t thinking positively about begin used as a catcher–well he certainly did.

But it’s all water under the bridge now if it’s true he’s okay with it. I just hope he’s not being misquoted by the Tigers’ Assistant GM now. I think with all the confusion it is important for him to make a postive statement to the press soon. If he plays hard and shows a good attitude about helping the team, my guess is he will get his wish to be traded sometime this summer

As I have said many times before, Inge was ‘My Tiger’ for years. I understand that someone, anyone, can be frustrated about having their job taken from them. But, bottom line, I don’t care how much you “love” your job, if you are making that much money a year, who cares. If it wasn’t about the money then there is no reason he/his agent, should have asked for 6 mil a year. No one needs that much money to be secure, unless you are living way beyond your means – which I guess 6 mil will do to a man of any caliber.

Honestly, I am TIRED of hearing and reading about Inge. Yes, he is awesome defensively but can’t hit worth a **** and 06′ was a fluke. If it would come down to it between keeping Raburn and Inge at this point on the roster, I would release Inge, eat the $ and move on.

I don’t care how much you love the game, money is the name of THE game in the US. I don’t care who you are. I would do some crazy stuff for 6 mil, so just getting it to play utility to the future WS winners isn’t a bad gig.

Anyway, I am sorry for the rampage there, I just can’t take it anyone.

I know I shouldn’t get into this debate, but Inge would’ve taken heat from fans whether he said anything or not this spring. If he kept quiet, people would’ve called him a $6.5 million freeloader.

I’m always the bad guy because of unwavering support for Inge. Thanks Jason for setting it straight. He’s in an impossible situation. Of all the guys who post here, I must be the only one who is still “pining” at the dissection of a team. I know when the Tigers start their season I will be like a little grinning kid as I have for the last 49 years. But in the reality of things, we gave away the kitchen sink and the microwave to win now. I cannot help that I am a baseball purist. I hate free agency; I have never forgiven Curt Flood or Catfish Hunter, and make no apologies for it. I just hope for our sake that Cabrera’s signature gets on the bottom line. I respect all of you guys, and I thank you for allowing me to feel sorry for myself. Go Tigers!

LOL Curt Flood! Remember Northrups line drive that he came in on in ’67?

Some Inge talk on http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/

If you view the article at the site above you will see active hyperlinks to several more blogs that are weighing in on the debate.

“Baseball Blogs Weigh In: Brandon Inge

Today, March 07, 2008, 38 minutes ago | Cork Gaines

Oh Brandon Inge…Has it really only been two years since Inge belted 27 home runs and endeared himself to Tigers fans everywhere by transforming himself from a utility player into an everyday Major League third baseman? In doing so, Inge became the poster-child for the resurgent Detroit franchise that took only three years to go from 119 losses to the World Series. And now? We are certain that there are still Tigers fans out there that love Inge, but we are having a hard time finding them. Inge, who has three years and $19MM left on a contract he signed prior to the ’07 season, was obviously upset when he lost his job after the Tigers traded for Miguel Cabrera. And despite an opportunity to receive 300+ at bats as a utility player on a contender (and receive $6.2MM while doing so) he is apparently unhappy about having to play catcher (though he feels that he was misquoted).

Now it seems like trading Inge may be the best solution for both sides with Inge landing a starting job on another team and the Tigers able to skim $6.2MM off the books for a player that was not going to start. The only question now is: Who is willing to give up a player (or two) for 30-year old Inge with a $6.2MM price tag, no seasons with an OPS+ greater than 100 since 2004 and bad facial hair? Let’s take a look at what is being written in the Blogospere…

If there is a topic you would like to see covered in “Baseball Blogs Weigh In” please let me know HERE.

A League of Her Own thinks the Cubbies should ship Ryan Dempster and Jason Marquis for Inge. Boy, Cubs fans really don’t like Marquis right now.

The Cub Reporter doubts that the Cubs will land Inge, as the team seems to be all talk this off-season…Anybody want a Brian Roberts update?

Mike Scioscia’s Tragic Illness lists about 437 reasons the Dodgers should not be interested in Inge, noting that the Dodgers would end up downgrading at third base, paying more salary to do so and weakening their bullpen in the process. And yeah, they don’t like his facial hair either.

Bugs & Cranks thinks Inge should just shut up and accept hit utility role on a good team.

Mack Ave. Tigers has finally had enough of Inge and doesn’t want a guy on the Tigers that doesn’t care about winning.

The Detroit Tigers Weblog wonders if Inge’s decision to start talking to reporters is a way to try and expedite a trade, but notes that his words are not endearing himself to any potential trade partners.

Mets Fever sees the Mets and Tigers as a good match up. If the Mets can’t land Marcus Thames, then maybe Inge would fill their needs.

Fanhouse thinks the Giants might make a good trade partner for the Tigers as Inge could be a better fit than Joe Crede whom the Giants have recently inquired about.

Cork Gaines writes for Rays Index and can be reached here.”

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