The dust has settled from Dave Dombrowski's annual trade deadline frenzy. Top prospects Jake Thompson, Corey Knebel, and Willy Adames have new homes. Thompson has made two starts in Double-A Frisco, with 14 strikeouts in less than 11 innings. He may turn into John Smoltz, but is more likely to turn into Jacob Turner. Turner was part of the supposedly high cost for Anibal Sanchez in 2012, but the Marlins traded him this week for a couple of B or C level Cubs prospects after designating him for assignment.
Dombrowski understands that most prospects do not turn into average major league ballplayers, not to mention stars. You need many prospects in the system to have a reasonable expectation that one or two will emerge. Is there anything left in his cupboard?
How about James McCann, a 24-year-old catcher in Triple-A Toledo hitting .310 and third in the league in doubles?
Or Hernan Perez, a 23-year-old middle infielder following up on a .301 average at Double-A Erie with a .274 average in Toledo, fifth in the league in doubles, and recently voted the best defensive shortstop in the International League?
Steven Moya, a 22-year-old left-handed outfielder at Erie leading the Eastern League with 28 home runs?
Devon Travis, a 23-year-old second baseman with a .301 / .358 / .468 slash line in Erie?
Josh Turley, a 23-year-old left-handed starting pitcher who was leading the Advanced-A Florida State League with a 0.96 WHIP, earning a recent promotion to Erie?
Buck Farmer, a 23-year-old starting pitcher with a 1.11 WHIP and 10.1 strikeouts-per-nine-innings in Low-A West Michigan, recently promoted to Erie?
Kevin Ziomek, a 22-year old southpaw leading the Midwest League with a 2.31 ERA and 127 strikeouts?
Austin Kubitza, a 22-year-old starting pitcher who will pass Ziomek's strikeout total in his next start?
Derek Hill, the 18-year-old first round draft pick expected to replace Austin Jackson sometime around 2019?
Grayson Greiner, the 21-year-old catcher selected in the third round and off to a hot start with the Whitecaps?
The Tigers also held onto Nick Castellanos, Eugenio Suarez, and Jose Iglesias, all with significant trade value due to proven major league success and a year or less of service time.
Most of these prospects will fade in the next few years. But one or two will become familiar names in Detroit.