Brandon Inge Signing With Oakland A's

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4 Total Updates since April 27, 2012
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FanGraphs: A's Replacing Brandon Inge With Brandon Inge

Look, this is an update about the Oakland Athletics signing Brandon Inge. It's not going to be the most riveting thing you read all day, unless you only read this update, or unless you only read this update and medicine warning labels. But then some of those medicine warning labels can really make you think. So many side effects! Some of them potentially serious!

But you're already here, and you're reading this for some reason, so: Inge is going to Oakland, to displace the guys they've had at third base, and over at FanGraphs, Dave Cameron talks about what this means for the team:

The team began the year with Josh Donaldson tabbed as the starter coming out of spring training. Donaldson is a 26-year-old who was a below average hitter in the PCL last year. Not surprisingly, he wasn’t able to hold the job for more than a few days, as Bob Melvin had him split time with utility infielder Eric Sogard. Sogard was bad, but Donaldson was worse, so he ended up back in Triple-A and the team claimed Luke Hughes on waivers from the Twins. Hughes played four games before he was DFA’d to make room for Inge.
[...]
Almost unbelievably, Inge is actually projected to outhit both incumbents, but of course the margin is so small that all three could really just be lumped into the same “awful hitter” category.

Brandon Inge doesn't project to be markedly different from Donaldson, Sogard, or Hughes at the plate. He has a very strong defensive reputation, which helps, but he's also nearly 35 and baseball players aren't like fine wine, for so many reasons. Basically, all this is is another sign that the Oakland A's really, really, really would've preferred that Scott Sizemore not injure himself so badly.

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Brandon Inge: Good Enough To Play Every Day For A's?

Last week, the Detroit Tigers placed Brandon Inge, by far their longest-tenured player, on waivers.

Sunday afternoon, Inge cleared waivers and the Oakland Athletics pounced. Once the formalities are concluded, Inge will join the A's after nearly 15 years in the Tigers' organization.

Jane Lee (via MLB.com):

The deal ... is pending a physical, so it’s unknown whether Inge will be in Boston on Monday for the club’s three-game series opener against the Red Sox. But once in uniform, it’s safe to assume his place in the everyday third-base role, following an early round of musical chairs at the position that saw a lack of production from Josh Donaldson, Eric Sogard and the recently acquired Luke Hughes. Combined, A’s third basemen had a .127 average with a .374 OPS, two home runs and six RBIs entering the day.

I will guess two things:

Guess #1 - You know that Brandon Inge is a good fielder and a poor hitter.

Guess #2 - Before this month or perhaps this spring, you'd never heard of Josh Donaldson, Eric Sogard, or Luke Hughes.

Is Everyday Inge better than the incumbent troika? It's difficult to say. We do know that Inge will make the manager's job quite a bit easier. Instead of agonizing over which replacement-level third baseman to write into the lineup every day, Bob Melvin can simply go with Brandon Inge almost every day and spend his intellectual energies elsewhere.

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Twins, A's, Orioles Could Be Interested In Brandon Inge

Brandon Inge was drafted by the Tigers in 1998. Think about that. Think about how long he's been with the same organization. When he was drafted, Barry Bonds looked like this:

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He suffered through a 119-loss Tigers team; he starred for a pennant-winning Tigers team. The great Matt Sussman put up a graph to chart just how Tigers fans have felt about him:

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So beloved ... now that he's gone.

But he isn't finished yet, and he isn't retiring. And other teams have interest. First from the Star Tribune:

Why would the Twins even consider adding him? If they decide that Danny Valencia would be better off working on his game at Class AAA Rochester, they could use Inge and Sean Burroughs in a platoon at third. Inge can also catch, which would interest the Twins.

Baseball, you cruel, cruel mistress. One minute you're winning the AL Central, and the next you're a last-place team considering a Brandon Inge/Sean Burroughs platoon. But the Twins will likely have some competition. From Roch Kubatko of MASN:

Orioles are still looking for ways to improve defense, and there's some interest in Inge. Can't completely dismiss him as possibility

Baseball, you cruel, cruel mistress. One minute the Orioles exist, and the next minute, the Orioles still exist. And finally, the A's, who lost their presumptive third baseman (Scott Sizemore) to injury, are expected to have interest:

Athletics are expected to have some interest in Brandon Inge, though he still must clear release waivers.

Inge is still a fantastic defensive third baseman, but he's about to turn 35, and he's coming off a career-worst season (.197/.265/.283).

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