Everything you ever wanted to know about Tiger Stadium

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The Society for American Baseball Research does a lot of things, but one of the coolest things it does is to host the indispensable Baseball BioProject.  These are no small bio-blurbs. They are painstakingly researched essays on the life and playing times of the game’s most significant players and events.

And stadiums. Like the latest entry by Scott Ferkovich on Tiger Stadium, which is all kinds of fabulous. All kinds of fun nuggets, like this:

Old-time Detroit baseball fans, who fondly remember Tiger Stadium’s green wooden slat-back seats, may be surprised to learn that Navin Field’s original seats — all 23,000 of them — were painted yellow. One feature that remained constant throughout the entire 87-year history of the park was the 125-foot-high flagpole in deep center, made distinctive because it was in the field of play.

And the flagpole is still there. Or a flagpole. Not sure. Kind of cool, though.

Anyway, great reading for anyone interested in the grand old ballparks, the Tigers or baseball history in general.

Will Middlebrooks carted off field with left ankle injury

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Phillies third baseman Will Middlebrooks suffered a serious injury during Saturday’s Grapefruit League contest against the Orioles. The infielder was chasing down a pop fly in the eighth inning when he ran into left fielder Andrew Pullin, who inadvertently trapped Middlebrooks’ ankle under his leg. Middlebrooks was unable to put weight on his leg following the collision and was carted off the field and taken to a local hospital for X-rays.

Per MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki, not much is known yet about the severity of the ankle injury or the recovery time it will require, though it appears serious enough to set Middlebrooks back considerably as he seeks a backup/bench role with the team this spring.

The 29-year-old is currently seeking another opportunity to extend his six-year major-league career in 2018. He’s coming off of two down years with the Brewers and Rangers, during which he slashed a cumulative .169/.229/.262 with four extra bases through 70 plate appearances.