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Morning Prowl: Brandon Inge, All-Star voting, plate-blocking and pitching in Taiwan

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Michael Rosenberg: Twins not just dead, they're really dead
In his introduction, Rosey says never declare the Twins dead is one of the three pillars of journalism. I'm going to stick to that pillar. Sure they look stiff. They smell awful. But fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me, fool me three times, and I can't be fooled again. I think The Who wrote that.

Q&A: Max Scherzer and Rick Knapp | FanGraphs Baseball
It wasn't too long ago David Laurila's final Q&A at Baseball Prospectus ran. Thank goodness, he seems to have found a new home at Fangraphs. Yesterday, his article featured one of the Tigers' young fireballers and the pitching coach.

Jose Bautista leads all players but Yankees racking up American League All-Star votes | MLB.com: News
Honestly, the shocking thing to me isn't that a Yankee or the Twins' Joe Mauer are 1-2 in the catching voting. I am shocked to see Alex Avila, who outside Detroit has to have very little name recognition, actually in third place. Not all the voters are biased or idiots! But c'mon, Miguel Cabrera third? Seriously? He's light years ahead of his competitors in OPS. But the All-Star Game isn't about any of that stuff, remember. It's just the northeast corridor fans getting what they want, as is the norm.

The Brandon Inge Problem " Fire Gerald Laird
Grey takes on the Inge Problem. And it is a problem. With defensive skills diminishing and offensive skills that were already borderline having fallen off a cliff, how do you justify playing him at third base with any regularity? And can the team admit one of its franchise players needs to be replaced in the infield by someone who isn't even in the organization right now? For the sake of the other 24 Tigers and the thousands (millions?) of fans, Detroit does have to tackle this subject by July 31.

Brandon Inge Picks Up Ten And Five Rights: MLB Rumors - MLBTradeRumors.com
So yeah. Inge can't be traded and he's got another year plus an option on his contract, which only serves to make decisions tougher for the Tigers front office.

Don't block the plate? Billy Beane is right - SweetSpot Blog - ESPN
Oakland's general manager told catcher Kurt Suzuki -- a fine first name that guy has! -- to avoid collisions at the plate. ESPN's Sweetspot blogger David Schoenfield agrees with that advice, writing "one run in a regular-season game isn't worth the injury risk."

Honestly I am not sure where I stand on this issue, though I'll admit it varies a bit. I don't want to see a highly-paid guy like Victor Martinez do it. He's a DH for the most part. Why lose him because of a game he catches? Alex Avila, on the other hand, well, he's a brick shit-house ain't he? The injury risk remains, but seriously, I wouldn't want to be the runner in that collision. Yet he's hitting pretty well this year and I'd hate to see him lost for one run saved, too.

Still, I guess I'm old school. I like a tough catcher willing to take a hit and apply a bit of pressure himself. How do you guys feel?

Great Scot! -- Scot Drucker's blog
Former Tigers minor leaguer (and frequent tweeter) Scot Drucker has bounced around a bit since his release from the Tigers organization this spring. Last week, he signed a contract with a team in Taiwan -- the Monkeys of the Chinese Professional Baseball League. While it's sad to see his major league dreams aren't going the way he hoped, it's nice to see Drucker making the most of the opportunity his arm affords him by playing overseas and writing about it for the rest of us. So be sure to follow his blog and twitter account to learn more about the league Fu-Te Ni came to the Tigers from, and how Drucker does in it.

Tigers' Phil Coke remains on track to pitch next Wednesday, won't be limited to pitch count | MLive.com
Coke is set to start Wednesday if all goes well.

DesigNate Robertson: A High Voltage Metaphor-Filled Effort from Lynn Henning
Rogo's back and you're going to be in trouble, hey-na, hey-na, Rogo's' back. OK he never left. But he did take a break from fisking Lynn Henning last week so he could get mad over Scott Sizemore's trade.

Daily Fungo: June 1, 2011 Looking Back at May, Looking Ahead to June
Mike McClary recaps the past month of baseball. Who's hot? Peralta. Who's not? Boesch and Raburn.