Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Pittsburgh Pirates roster hopeful Brandon Inge used mixed martial arts to stay in shape this offseason

 

Veteran MLB infielder Brandon Inge underwent a rather intense training regimen this offseason in hopes of landing on an Opening Day roster.

The longtime Detroit Tiger joined the Oakland A's in the middle of last season before a right shoulder injury ultimately cut his campaign short in September. He was forced to have surgery and was faced with the difficult challenge of rehabilitation. About six weeks ago, Inge changed his regimen dramatically and opted to begin mixed martial arts training with strength and conditioning coach Mike Barwis, instead.

“A lot of guys mess around with it," said Inge. "It’s not as fun as what it sounds like. Learning the moves is fun. Actually doing a training session for it, where I would do the sparring, you are done. You can’t breathe. It’s the best workout ever. No one would argue that.”

Inge, 35, also trained with fellow professional players Mitch Maier, Ryan LaMarre, and Alan Oaks, however, he claims none of them wanted any part of the MMA training.

"None of the other guys wanted to get involved, because we started getting intense,” Inge said Monday. "People were like, ‘Nuh-uh.’ Sparring, going at each other, takedowns. On the mat is the hardest part. You are battling for body position, trying to control his hands, because if you get in certain areas he’ll put you in an armbar in two seconds."

Inge said he participated in training sessions two days a week and for 90 minutes each. He is currently battling for a spot with the Pittsburgh Pirates after being invited as a non-roster player.

He made his debut in 2001 with the Tigers and earned an All-Star nod in 2009.

Via FOX Sports

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