Brandon Inge says his knees (particularly his more painful left one) are feeling better, thanks to a new treatment program. (It all sounds sort of Zen, with focusing on other things to block out the pain.) And perhaps his four hits over the weekend indicate that he's learning how to play with his current injuries.
But we know that Dave Dombrowski looked at players who might be able to help out at third base, with rumors of interest in Freddy Sanchez and Marco Scutaro (though exact discussions were never confirmed). And with the Tigers' performance in Cleveland, one would presume that the Tigers are still looking for a bat that could help their offense.
Could Milwaukee's Bill Hall be an option?
He's played 263 games at third base over his career, 261 at shortstop, and also has experience in centerfield and at second base. Is he as good as Inge at third? No, but how many players are? (Hall's career UZR of 7.6 would currently have him among the top 10 among third basemen this season. So would his 3.7 this year.)
The Brewers demoted him to Triple-A last week, as he was hitting .201/.263/.337 with five homers and 20 RBIs in 199 at-bats this season. As a result, he'd lost playing time to Casey McGehee (and the newly acquired Felipe Lopez). Hall was called back up, however, when Corey Hart went on the DL yesterday. So he apparently has another chance.
But the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel's Tom Haudricourt thinks it's time for both sides to move on:
The best thing that could happen is a change of venue. Hall has done a decent job of keeping a stiff upper lip and has not been a negative force in the clubhouse, but that could change if he stays with the Brewers for the remainder of his contract.
The Brewers weren't wrong to give Hall a four-year, $24 million contract after he batted .270 with 35 homers and 85 RBI in 2006. But they did him no favors by asking him to move to center field the next season, then back to the infield in '08 after [Mike] Cameron was signed.
Hall didn't do himself any favors, either, by stubbornly refusing to make adjustments at the plate until he hit rock bottom. He got homer happy after the 35 bombs in '06 and continued to try to pull breaking balls, leaving him lost at the plate.
It's doubtful the Brewers are willing to eat all that money just yet. But, in essence, the money is gone, and it's time for Hall to be gone, too.
One big problem is that Hall is still owed $8.4 million for next year, on a deal he signed after that 35-homer season in 2006. (He's hit 34 homers since then.) And he has a $500,000 buyout for 2011.
Haudricourt speculates that Milwaukee would have to eat at least $7 million on that remaining contract to get another team interested. Or... perhaps they could take on another bad contract in return.
Hmm... Nate Robertson is set to be paid almost the exact same amount of money. I'm just sayin'...