The Detroit Tigers have acquired Kansas City infielder Wilson Betemit in a deal which will strengthen the Indians’ chief rival (for now) in the American League Central. The Tigers gave the Royals two class-A prospects to get the veteran.
Detroit will be the sixth stop in Betemit’s career, which began in 2001 with the Atlanta Braves. Betemit was hitting .281 in 57 games with the Royals this season, with his playing time being drastically cut back by Kansas City’s promotion of Mike Moustakis in June.
Since June 10 Betemit has had only five starts and 23 total at-bats.
Betemit is replacing Detroit’s Brandon Inge at third place. Inge has been designated for assignment, but says that he will report to AAA Toledo should he clear wavers.
“I could have made the decision to not accept the assignment and maybe get picked up by another team,” said Inge, who has played for the Tigers since 2001. “But this is home, and this is my team. I need to go down and work this out, but I’ll be back. I’ll be back in September no matter what. That’s a definite.”
Betemit has belted three homers and has driven in 27 runs in 2011. His best season was in 2006, when he blasted 18 homers in split-duty between the Braves and the Los Angeles Dodgers. He also achieved his high in RBI in 2006, with 53.
Inge is an 11-year veteran who has spent his entire career in the Motor City. He was slumping this year, hitting only .177 in 70 games.