From Yahoo's Eric Adelson. A paean to Inge.
I know I always hated seeing Inge come up against the A's in a clutch situation. He seemed to always be dangerous. I just knew he'd crack out a ringing double. Plus, he played extremely well in the field, both as a catcher and as a third baseman. He deserved his all-star status. Beyond that, he always presented himself as decent person. He was a credit to the Tigers, for whom he played his entire 12-year career.
So why have the fans turned? And why does Adelson need to defend him? Players do get old and lose out to the young. No reason to turn on them. Give a guy like Inge a graceful exit.
As an A's fan, I say this even though the A's are reportedly looking at Inge to fill a hole at 3B. I doubt Inge is the answer here, but maybe he will be able to refresh himself with a new team. Still, I think Inge's body is too beaten up for all he gave to the Tigs and I have my doubts that he can offer much to a new team.
Allow this man his dignity and recognize his contributions to Detroit. He had a great run in Motown.
Two games with two run errors finally made everyone edgy and Leyland was digging his heels in when the GM, Dombrowski, wanted Inge off the field. The Tigers need field stability right now, especially in light of Delmon Young's deplorable actions. Less card shuffling in the lineup and field rotation.
It makes me sad to think that Inge had to go away mad. He was the last remaining Tiger who suffered through the immensely difficult losing seasons earlier in the decade. He is due his day, I agree with you, and I hope that once feelings cool he will be invited back next season for the appreciation he richly deserves. All I can conclude is that he couldn't let go and no one wanted to pull the plug until it was all too late and screwed up.
And, now, Weezie--the A's have signed Inge. He reports Monday in Boston. Well...let's hope it works out. If he regains his form, it will. If not....
Maybe he can mentor the 3B fill-ins who are there now. As the SF Chron observed, Sizemore has lost the season. And while Sogard is a decent utility guy, his bat leaves much to be desired. Josh Donaldson, converted catcher now in Sacto, might well benefit from Inge's experience.
Still, I have a great deal of trepidation over this move.
Inge will make a good coach. I'll bet he's loudly cheered during the next A's stand in the D. Detroiters are usually apologetic when they've been misbehaving.
I'd like to see him back in the Tiger farm system as a manager.
Inge was a true Tiger...no matter what happened, he just kept his head down and played ball. He pretty much played every position except pitcher in the D, it seemed. A lot of fans had soured on his play recently, but I've always been one of those people who had his back because he had been through so much and his play had been clutch in the past. I really hope he does well with the A's, and I think that in his first series back in Comerica, he will be welcomed warmly.
Duke | Mirecourt | Detroit| The U | USA
On Tuesday night, Inge showed he still has athleticism.
With 2 outs in the 7th, A's up 5-1, Cody Ross on second (doubled) and Punto on first due to a walk, Aviles faced A's reliever Brian Fuentes. Aviles hit a sharp grounder to Inge, who made a tough handle on slippery ground, lost his footing in the wet and recovered in time to lunge at and tag Ross who was starting to slide into third. (For some reason, MLB.com says it was a force out, but it was a tag which got Ross in the midsection.) That actually may have been a game winning play, because had the third out not been made, the roof could have fallen in.
Later the Sawks got two runs against the A's closer who fared poorly, getting only one out, and who himself was relieved with the tying run at the plate (Anderson, then Pedroia). That pitcher was Norberto (the guy I accused earlier of being a AAA pitcher). It was Norberto's first save, striking Anderson out then getting Pedroia to ground to second. Norberto's been doing better of late, so maybe my assessment was premature, if not outright wrong.
At the plate, Inge went 0 for 5, though he put the ball in play four times, and protected the base stealers twice. (The A's stole third four times.)
Still don't know why MLB says the play was a force out. Yahoo calls it a fielder's choice.