Monday, April 2, 2012

Better Know a Tiger: Brandon Inge

As we are just days away from Opening Day, here at DNR we will take a closer look at some of the key players in the Tigers’ pursuit of championship in 2012. With apologies to Jhonny Peralta, Joaquin Benoit, Austin Jackson, Ryan Raburn, Jose Valverde Phil Coke, and the other Tigers I didn’t get to, I wrap up this little series with a (final?) look at the most polarizing Tiger I have ever seen.

Yes, it’s Jim Leyland’s Special Little Guy himself, Mr. Brandon Inge.



Full Name: Charles Brandon Inge

Date of Birth: May 19, 1977 (34 years old)

From: Lynchburg,Virginia

Height: 5’11

Weight: 190 lbs

High School: Brookville (Lynchburg, VA)

College: VCU

Journey To Detroit: Drafted by Tigers in the second round (57th overall) of the 1998 MLB Draft. Made Tigers debut in 2001.

Best Season: 2006: .253 Avg, 27 HR, 83 RBI, 5.8 WAR

Worst Season: (Tie: all of them...j/k) 2011: .197 Avg, 3 HR, 23 RBI, -0.6 WAR

2012 Salary: $5.5 million

Career earnings through 2011: $34.7 million+

Likes

-Third base

-Starting

-Awful tattoos

-Sick Kids

-Camping (makes him happy?)

Dislikes

-Catching

-His knees

-Not playing

-Mono

-Pudge Rodriguez, Miguel Cabrera, and Prince Fielder taking his jobs

-Reality

Did You Know?

-The Tigers suck at drafting. Have I mentioned that? Players drafted in 1998 after Inge include Matt Holliday, Aubrey Huff, Mark Buehrle, Jack Wilson, Eric Hinske, and Juan Pierre. Well, forget Pierre. I hate him.

-In college, Inge was a shortstop and relief pitcher. Thus explaining why for 11 years he’s hit like a pitcher.

-In 2006, Inge recorded 398 assists playing third base. That number broke the Tigers single season record for assists by a third baseman (previously 389 by Aurelio Rodríguez in 1974) and was only 14 short of the all time MLB record for 3B assists (set by Graig Nettles in 1971). Only five 3B (including Nettles, Brooks Robinson, and Mike Schmidt) have collected more assists in a season than Brandon. Since I’m a jerk, I should also mention that he was 2nd in errors by a 3B that year and was 1st in 2005, 2007, and 2009.

-That number you read above, career earnings of $34.7 million, was not a typo. It’s actually more due to 2002 salary info being unavailable to my ignorant eyes. But considering Brandon’s played in 1399 MLB games, that comes out to an average salary of over $24,803 per game. Imagine that. Twenty-five grand PER GAME to hit .235, have an OPS+ of 83, and expose thousands of us to so many fat girls with tramp stamps wearing his jersey. Hey, bravo to him for pulling it off.

Outlook for 2012

The end.

This is the swan song for Brandon Inge in Detroit. He has a $6 million team option for 2013, but I think it’s a done deal that Dave Dombrowski will give him the $500K buyout instead. If not, I look forward to leading the pitchfork and torch march to Tigers Headquarters.

But this year, he may start the season on the DL. He may be traded if the Tigers can find anyone desperate enough. He may be DFA’d. And yeah…he could somehow screw Danny Worth out of a job he earned and make the team as a utility player. They do owe him over $5 million no matter what. We should find out any day now.

**EDIT: Leyland announced that while Inge will be on the DL at the season's start, he will be the starting second baseman against left-handed pitching. Did Danny Worth piss off JL in some sort of Scott Sizemore way that we don't know about? In any case, fuck and you, Jim.**

But seriously, has there ever been a more polarizing player in Tigers history? Everyone seems to either love or hate the guy…very little in between. I believe it was Bob Wojokowski that compared Inge to Tim Tebow last week and took some crap for it. But I see his point. Inge is Tebow-like on a local level with his popularity. Both are Caucasian, hard-working, nice, involved with charity work…you know. All the stuff that white people eat up that has nothing to do with on the field product. They are also both overrated, over-hyped, one-dimensional players that do little more to help the team than sell jerseys to their psychotic goofball followers.

In fact, other than the different sports they play, I see only one real difference between Inge and Tebow. Tebow is a proud virgin. Inge is so proud of his sexual exploits that he had the products of them tattooed on his arms.

I make fun of Brandon, mainly due to his delusional fans, but it hasn’t been all bad. The guy has hit some key homers for us over the years. He’s made some unbelievable plays at third. You can never accuse him of not trying his best. And there has never been a guy that has been so giving of his time to the community. I tip my hat to all of that stuff.

But enough is enough. The guy is broken down and finished. Don't feel bad for him. He's been more than fairly compensated for his time and had over a decade in the show. But like Higginson, Guillen, Ordonez, Rogers, Bonderman, The Patron Saint Nate, and so many others before them…the party is over.

Thanks for always trying. Take a bow, Brandon.

And then get the fuck out.

4 comments:

H2OPoloPunk said...

Fitting eulogy, Rogo.

Now go the fuck home, Inge. 

Bob said...

LMAO....  Damn your the best..

Jay Hathaway said...

Hehe, he has had his moments.  I guess the one that sticks out for me is the walk-off homer against the Astros in interleague play, June 2009 (off Valverde!).  I know it was a minimally meaningful game, but I remember that it was a nice summer day and the win really capped it off.

Now on my way to Tigers-Hens exhibition!

William Westbrook said...

That's the Inge moment I remember also -- hearing the homer over a laptop computer in Paris. Well, that and his whiffing in the Home Run Derby a few weeks later. And thinking back, there was his standing as a symbol of that 2003 team. Wasn't he sent down as the .150-hitting starting catcher?