Will Brandon Inge Make the 25 Man Roster?

Should he and Will he are two different questions. Based on what I know of JL and his loyalty to veterans and unwillingness to change, I think Inge is a shoeo-in. Despite the fact that Dombrowski may be pushing the other way. But let’s see what we know:

Turner, Strieby and Berry (and 3 others) were sent down on Monday, so there goes my Quentin Berry for CF campaign.



Bubble Pitchers
Below, Oliver and Smyly – It looks like there is room for only 1 out of these 3 on the opening day roster. I like Smyly – he’s had a great spring, despite yesterday’s setback. Though that didn’t phase his confidence. Below going tomorrow.

Villareal or Marte for the final pen spot.




Bubble Fielders
Inge or Worth
Dirks or Thomas (know that Thomas is out of options)

Like I wrote above, I think that Leyland is so loyal that he’ll stick with Inge, despite the arguments that Danny Worth is earning the job. And Worth is arguably playing for a starting job, not just a roster spot.

So let’s discuss.


  1. StorminNorman$

    March 29, 2012 at 1:40 pm

    Leyland being loyal to veterans coupled with the fact that Inge is going to get paid $6M this year by the Tigers whether he makes the roster or not, would indicate to me that Inge will be on the opening day roster.

    DD was probably hoping for a couple things to transpire this spring: 1) Inge would have a good spring hitting the ball (but he’s been typical Inge at the plate), and 2) some other team with little or no depth at 3B would lose their starting 3B to a long-term injury… thus prompting trade value for BInge – so DD could package together Inge, maybe a Raburn or Dirks or Thomas and one of their pitching prospects for a quality #5 starter.

  2. Andrew in Toronto

    March 29, 2012 at 2:23 pm

    If they were willing to DFA him last year, why wouldn’t they do it now?

    He hasn’t proved anything since then.

  3. Andrew in Toronto

    March 29, 2012 at 2:39 pm

    Scratch Oliver off the list. He’s with the Mud Hens now.

  4. Vince in MN

    March 29, 2012 at 3:11 pm

    Unless Below bombs completely, I think they will go with him as the No. 5. They won’t need a fifth starter for a while with all the off days and he can work out of the bullpen as a long man until they need him to start. Smily meanwhile can get regular starts at Toledo. I think they may want to “protect” him anyway because of his age (20).

    From a performance standpoint, the thing to do with Inge is give him the boot. I don’t really see the point of having a .170 hitting, soon to be 35-year old reserve on the roster when there are younger AND better options. As for retaining him on the basis of loyalty possibility, they weren’t particularly keen on bringing back either Guillen or Ordonez this year and both of those guys certainly deserved more loyalty consideration than Inge. With the huge expenditure of dough for the Fielder signing, which strongly suggests Illich’s desire to win now, perhaps the hearts are hardening a little bit in that regard. We’ll see in a few days.

  5. Vince in MN

    March 29, 2012 at 3:29 pm

    The way I look at the money thing is that the Tigers are out 6.5M this year between Inge (6M) and Worth (.5M) no matter which one is on the MLB roster. From a competitveness standpoint, which player makes more sense on the roster? One argument is that Worth has options, but the fact remains that if Inge couldn’t do any better than his usual sub-Mendoza line performance in ST where he faced a lot of AAA and AA pitching, what liklihood is there that he is going to pick it up when the real games begin.

    • Jeff Molby

      March 30, 2012 at 10:52 am

      You’re right about the money.

      I figure Inge makes the roster for the simple fact that Worthy has an option left. They’ll give Inge a chance to prove he can hit with his usual mediocre average plus a bit of power. If he can’t, they’ll cut him and bring up Worthy. If he can, they’ll toss ’em to someone that needs an infielder and has a couple million to spare.

      • Jeff Molby

        March 30, 2012 at 10:53 am

        Err, make that “Worth”.

        • Vince in MN

          March 30, 2012 at 5:33 pm

          Seems like a waste of a good option to me. I think Inge has 0 trade value. Even if the Tigers try to sell him at a steep discount I doubt there are any serious buyers, especially since if he is released he can be picked up for nothing.

  6. Kevin in Dallas

    March 30, 2012 at 11:08 am

    Balester – 1 2/3 hitless yesterday.

    Inge PH as the tying runner in the bottom of the 9th and GIDP on the first pitch he saw. Worth has 0 PAs as a late inning replacement.

  7. bada bing

    March 30, 2012 at 11:21 am

    Here is my prediction:

    Inge will make the team. Anger will ensue.

  8. Kevin in Dallas

    March 30, 2012 at 2:41 pm

    The 5th spot should be Smyly’s to lose now. Below gave up 3 earned and 4 walks in 3 1/3.

    • Vince in MN

      March 30, 2012 at 5:37 pm

      “You take it.”
      “No, you take it.”
      “No, you can have it.”
      Another candidate pitches himself out of the running – amazing.

  9. Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

    March 31, 2012 at 3:02 pm

    The season will start, TIgers will get hurt, Inge will play!

    On another note, a good article about the Tigers in this issue of ESPN, The Magazine. Lots of good photos. Also Sports Illustrated perdicts the Tigers to win the Central but loose to the Yankees in a divisional series (what about the last two divisional series?) Meanwhile they predict the Angels win the WS over the Giants. A west coast marketeer’s dream!

    See y’all opening day!


  10. Coleman

    March 31, 2012 at 3:48 pm

    Inge is out with a groin Inge-ury

    With Laird out too, the Tigers were hurting offensively today and could only scratch out 2 runs…

  11. beejeez

    April 1, 2012 at 10:44 am

    You’re doing great, Kevin, but for future reference, it’s “shoo-in.”

    • Vince in MN

      April 1, 2012 at 11:46 am

      I think Kevin actually intended “shoehorned in.”

    • Vince in MN

      April 1, 2012 at 11:55 am

      By the way, when Smily makes his first MLB start on the 12th, he will be debuting in what Ed Sullivan years ago (I’m showing my age here) would have called the Big Shew.

      • Kevin in Dallas

        April 1, 2012 at 1:32 pm

        Excellent catch, made the edit above.

  12. Vince in MN

    April 1, 2012 at 11:52 am

    Maybe the Inge strategy will involve putting him on the DL to start the season while they desperately try to work out some kind of trade. How long can a player actually remain on the 15-day list?

    • Coleman

      April 1, 2012 at 12:56 pm

      Apparently the Tigers have been trying hard to interest the Phillies in Inge…makes sense, it’s where old Tigers go (even Grilli stopped by)…but the Phillies were “not so much” about it.

  13. Kevin in Dallas

    April 1, 2012 at 1:35 pm

    Just heard on the broadcast that Marte got the spot over Villareal. With Smyly named as the 5th starter, I guess that just leaves Inge v. Worth. Freep reporting that the decision will come tomorrow.


    • Coleman

      April 1, 2012 at 1:57 pm

      Worth has options, they send Worth down they keep both, I don’t think it’s a difficult decision…if Inge bombs they release him/give him away, and bring up Worth.

      • Kevin in Dallas

        April 1, 2012 at 2:19 pm

        The argument against that is are we stunting Worth’s development and/or harming the team by playing Inge at all.

    • Coleman

      April 1, 2012 at 2:06 pm

      Also, since we’re all but guaranteed for the postseason (a tiny bit TIC there), we need to keep Inge around for that…he is .296/.412/.566 career ALCS.

      (Yes, I have an agenda here: bringing Stephen out of hibernation).

      • Vince in MN

        April 2, 2012 at 10:46 am

        Also for some drama. With the Tigers winning the division by 20 games, it is going to be just so boring.

  14. Coleman

    April 1, 2012 at 2:22 pm

    Well, we have a short-term answer to the Inge dilemma: Miguel Cabrera to the 30-day DL, Inge Opening Day starter at 3B!


  15. Akaash Prasad

    April 2, 2012 at 3:58 am

    ya why not?

  16. stephen

    April 3, 2012 at 12:56 am

    Who is this Brandon Inge that you doth speaketh about?

    • Coleman

      April 3, 2012 at 4:04 pm

      He is the 2B, or not 2B. That is the question.