The excitement of the Eastern League All-Star experience still fresh in the air, Dean Green was in route to return for the start of the second half of the season for the Erie SeaWolves. With barely the chance to stop for a breather, official word was released on Thursday afternoon that the power hitter was being called up to join the Triple-A Toledo Mud Hens.
Coming out of Barry University, Green was selected by Detroit in the 11th round of the 2011 MLB draft. To put it simply, Green is as solid in plate presence as he is in his 6'4, 255 pound frame.
Detroit fans will be the first to tell you that the lack of a set position is not a statistic that is known for working in your favor; though moments of silence for Don Kelly are still known to happen on occasion. While Green has regularly moonlighted at first base, his role within the organization has developed over time into being known for his deceptive quickness and solid hands. Those traits have each contributed to building a name around the league as a legitimate designated hitter.
In his opening campaign with Class-A Short Season Connecticut in 2011, Green silenced any doubters when he hit .341/.395/.520, driving in 7 home runs and 44 RBI in 65 games. Green continued to consistently climb the ladder, despite concern regarding his defensive contribution.
In 2012, Green continued his electric run when he began hitting .348/.410/.518. Transition and recuperation from injury caused Green to bounce around the organization one several occasions between 2012 and 2013, before settling into his groove with the Double-A Erie SeaWolves.
In 2014, Green hit .311/.365/.452, including 10 home runs, 26 doubles, and 65 RBI. Notable defensive position or not, Green's ability to "speak softly and carry a big stick" left little-to-no room for doubt in his chances of advancing through the system.
As the 2015 season played out, a nagging ankle injury sidelined Green for a time, including a stint of time spent on the disabled list for the SeaWolves. Green's reintroduction to live play showed no signs of struggle as he went on to hit .316/.392/.480, posting a 13 percent strikeout rate and another 10 home runs in 288 plate appearances.
As is usual this time of year, the shifting of roster chess pieces within the Tigers organization will continue. Marc Krauss' performance at the major league level hasn't impressed anyone, and with Green's level of production, don't be surprised if a hot start in Toledo carries him into another call-up.