clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Projecting this year’s Tigers minor league All-Stars

The Tigers will have their fair share of minor league All-Stars in 2018.

Minor League Baseball: Arizona Fall League-Fall Stars Game
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

If you can believe it, minor league All-Star games are right around the corner. Thus, it’s probably time to take a look around the Detroit Tigers system and project a few guys at each level that might be in contention for a nod in their respective leagues’ Mid-Summer Classic. It’s also an opportune time to look back on the organization’s 2017 All-Stars and see how they are progressing through the farm system.

West Michigan Whitecaps – Midwest League (Lansing, MI; June 19th)

2017 All-Stars

LHP Gregory Soto – Soto is off to a rough start in Class A-Advanced Lakeland, but is still widely considered the top left-handed arm in the system. He has struggled with command throughout his career, but this year he has been especially wild, with 31 walks in 34 23 innings. Soto delivered a rock solid outing on May 21, going seven strong innings, with two earned runs, five hits, seven strikeouts, and two walks. Hopefully, that is a start that can get him back on track.

LHP Austin Sodders – The UC-Riverside product had a couple bad outings back in April, but has really settled down nicely since then. His 0.94 WHIP is third in the Florida State League, and his 41 strikeouts to just eight walks is a good sign.

RHP Jason Foley – Signed as an undrafted free agent in 2016 out of Sacred Heart University, Foley is a reliever with triple-digit heat. Unfortunately, he has been sidelined since July of last year, having undergone Tommy John surgery.

1B Blaise Salter – The 6’5, 245 pound Michigan State product got off to a hot start with Lakeland and was promoted to Erie in early May. He has struggled against Double-A pitching so far, and has yet to demonstrate enough power to be a major league first baseman.

INF Josh Lester – Lester could be considered a left-handed, third base version of Salter. However, I think he has a prettier swing and is a little more polished right now. He will need to draw more walks, demonstrate more power, and continue to work on his defense to stick at third and move up in the system.

OF Jake Robson – Robson is a feisty left-handed leadoff hitter who works the count and gets on base. He stole 21 bases last year across two levels, but was also caught 18 times. So he needs to become a more efficient base stealer, especially given his lack of power. With a 26 percent strikeout rate in his professional career, he will also need to put the ball in play more often. It’s hard to ignore that .384 on-base percentage, though.

2018 All-Star Contenders

LHP Eudis Idrogo – He will obviously not participate in the game due to his recent promotion to Lakeland. Idrogo, however, was about as dominant a starter as there was in all of baseball through six starts with the ‘Caps.

RHP Wladimir Pinto – Like Idrogo, Pinto has moved on to Lakeland. In 11 relief appearances, he gave up only four hits and didn’t allow a single run, striking out 30 in 16 23 innings. I wouldn’t be surprised if he took home All-Star honors.

RHP Burris Warner – Warner’s 1.22 ERA is second only to Idrogo among Midwest League pitchers. He has worked primarily in a long relief role, with three spot starts sprinkled in. At 23 years old, he should be on his way to Lakeland soon.

SS Cole Peterson – The St. Bonaventure product grabbed the Tigers online community’s attention this week with a spectacular catch during Matt Manning’s start on May 22. He is a terrific defender, and has been one of the few offensive bright spots in a pretty barren Whitecaps lineup, hitting .304 and leading the team with 25 runs scored.

1B Reynaldo Rivera – Missing most of April due to a stint on the disabled list, Rivera has been a premium run producer since joining the team on April 27. The raw power is evident, and he has quickly amassed ten doubles, four homers, and 20 RBI.

Lakeland Flying Tigers – Florida State League (Tampa, FL; June 16th)

2017 All-Stars

RHP Beau Burrows – Have you heard of him? He’s pretty good. After a couple so-so starts in the cold April weather, Burrows has been dynamite, allowing just four earned runs in his last four starts combined. It’s okay to get a little excited about him now.

OF Ross Kivett – I’m not really sure what Kivett did to earn FSL All-Star honors last year. His numbers were very pedestrian. He was promoted to Erie and promptly released in June 2017 to make room for Steven Moya, who is also no longer in the Tigers’ organization. Kivett is now coaching at the University of Tennessee.

2018 All-Star Contenders

INF/OF Chad Sedio – Sedio just continues to get hits day in and day out. At .319, he’s among the league leaders in batting average. He showed some pop in West Michigan last year, where he hit 11 homers. That hasn’t resurfaced in the FSL yet, as he has only connected for one so far. Nonetheless, as I write this, his hit tool has just gotten him promoted to Erie.

RHP Alex Faedo – Outside of one complete nightmare of an outing, Faedo has pretty much manhandled Florida State League hitters. Some are concerned about his over-reliance on the slider and a 3-4 mile-per-hour velocity dip from his college days. Some are not.

OF Daz Cameron & SS Isaac Paredes – These two are longshots, and if they make the team, it will be because of name recognition. Both are doing some nice things in terms of their development. But neither is having what I would consider an All-Star worthy season.

Erie SeaWolves – Eastern League (Trenton, NJ; July 11th)

2017 All-Stars

LHP Jairo Labourt – Labourt ascended all the way to the major leagues in 2017 and has since been cut loose by three different organizations, including twice by the Tigers. It appears we can cross him off the prospect list.

1B/OF Dominic Ficociello – ‘Fico’ remains in Erie this season and he’s doing what he has done pretty much everywhere he has been. He’s hitting for average and providing versatility. He is a switch-hitter who runs well and plays both corner infield and outfield positions. The lack of power coinciding with his relatively high strikeout rate are probably holding him back from advancement. But he’s a nice player to have in your organization.

1B Gabriel Quintana – Quintana is back in Erie after a brief stay up in Toledo. He has excellent power but never walks, whiffs a ton, and simply cannot play in the majors with that combo.

OF Mike Gerber – He earned headlines after his monster Opening Weekend in April, eventually making his major league debut. Gerber is in Florida rehabbing his shoulder and figures to play some type of role in the Tigers’ outfield in 2019 and beyond.

OF Christin Stewart – I don’t think this one needs much of a summary. Stewart is leading the International League in homers with 11 and is leading Twitter in “Bring him up” tweets. We’ll see him in September — maybe sooner if other things happen.

2018 All-Star Contenders

RHP Beau Burrows – Minor league baseball loves to use All-Star games to showcase the top prospects. Burrows has the prospect status and has backed it up with his performance. He’s a lock.

SS Sergio Alcantara – I’m admittedly higher on him than many. If you look at Eastern League shortstops though, he’s having the best year of anyone not named Brendan Rodgers.

Toledo Mud Hens – International League (Columbus, OH; July 11th)

2017 All-Stars

RHP Jeff Ferrell – After appearing in 20 games with the Tigers in parts of 2015 and ’17, Ferrell elected free agency in the offseason. He went to Spring Training with the Orioles but was released before the season started.

RHP Arcenio Leon – The Tigers released the now 31-year old Leon after the 2017 season. He is now pitching for Oaxaca in the Mexican League.

2018 All-Star Contenders

OF Christin Stewart – Unless he’s in Detroit by July, Stewart will be the cleanup hitter for the International League squad, and figures to put on a display in the Home Run Derby at Huntington Park.

OF Jim Adduci – Adduci is a professional hitter and run producer. He is among the league leaders in most meaningful offensive categories.

IF Ronny Rodriguez – “El Felino” nearly made the Tigers roster out of spring training, edged out by Niko Goodrum. He has been a really good minor leaguer for a long time, and is currently working on an 18-game hitting streak. His career walk rate of 4.05 percent just doesn’t cut it, though.

RHP AJ LadwigBlaine Hardy was completely dominant before his call-up, and Drew VerHagen is also blowing away Triple-A hitters since his demotion. Put Ladwig on the All-Star watch-list though. With a brief DL stint in late April mixed in, Ladwig has strung together six terrific outings. He took a perfect game into the seventh inning against Gwinnett on May 19, and now has a 2.43 ERA with 24 strikeouts and just six walks.