- C, DH, 3B, CF, LF, OF, RF
- May 19, 1977
- 5' 11"
- 190 lbs
- Major League Debut:
- 4-03-2001 with DET
Drafted by the Detroit Tigers in the second round of the 1998 amateur draft out of VCU, Brandon Inge was in the big leagues three years later, though he batted an anemic .180 in 79 games as a catcher. Undisciplined at the plate, Inge spent parts of the next two seasons in the minors, but the Tigers continued to give him an opportunity to mature at the big league level. A favorite of manager Alan Trammell, Inge was reknowned for his incredible athletic ability (he reportedly could hit a golf ball more than 300 yards). But when Detroit signed Ivan Rodriguez in 2004, Inge lost his starting catching job. Under the guidance of Trammell and his staff, Inge was converted to a third baseman, where his strong arm and quick feet proved an asset. Hampered by the spacious Comerica Park, Inge's power numbers suffered, but he still managed to slug 27 homers in 2006.
Inge made headlines in 2008 when he went on the disabled list for pushing a pillow. He was trying to position the pillow beneath the head of his son, who slept in the same bed as Mr. and Mrs. Inge; in so doing, he repopped a muscle.
Inge had a career year as the Tigers' third baseman in 2009, making the All-Star team while hitting 27 homers and driving in 84 runs. He started the season by successfully reaching base 24 games in a row, the longest such streak for the Tigers since 1976.
On August 26, 2010, Inge achieved his 1,000th career hit against the Kansas City Royals.
On September 25, 2010, Inge set the Tigers franchise mark for strikeouts with 1,100. In the same game however, Inge had the game winning hit in the 13th inning against the Minnesota Twins.
Inge received the 2010 Marvin Miller Man of the Year Award, given by the Major League Baseball Players Association each year "to the player whose on-field performances and community outreach most inspire others to higher levels of achievement."
Less than two years later, the Tigers had him designated for assignment after a woeful first half to the 2011 season. He was hitting .177 with one homer in 70 games when the Tigers let him go on July 20th, on the day they acquired Wilson Betemit from the Kansas City Royals to play 3B. He accepted an assignment to the AAA Toledo Mud Hens, however, and exactly one month after his career almost ended, he was back in the first-place Tigers' line-up on August 20th, celebrating by hitting a homer off David Huff in his first at-bat, and hitting a 400-foot RBI double in his second as the Tigers cruised to a 10-1 win over the Cleveland Indians.
Quotes From Brandon Inge
"We beat the Yankees [in the Division Series], they wanted to fire Joe Torre. We beat Oakland [in the ALCS], they fired their manager [Ken Macha]. It's like they're saying, 'You should be embarrassed to have lost to the Tigers.' No one gives us credit for being the team we are." — on a lack of respect for the Tigers in the 2006 post-season
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- Brandon Inge