MLB Pipeline’s latest prospect rankings have been pretty high on a few Tigers pitchers in a sign that the farm-side of the rebuild — at least from a pitching standpoint — is going strong.
As mentioned before, Tigers’ top-ranked prospect Casey Mize also sits atop the list of all right-handed pitchers, with his advanced arsenal and mature approach to the game working strongly in his favor, while Matt Manning comes in at seventh among righties. MLB Pipeline has also released its list of top left-handers with Tarik Skubal coming in at No. 4. Author of that article Jonathan Mayo had the following to say about the lefty.
“He’d always been known as having good stuff; it’s just that few got to see it,” MLB.com’s Jonathan Mayo writes. “Tommy John surgery cost him nearly all of his first two collegiate seasons and he was inconsistent as a junior. The Tigers took a chance by taking him in the ninth round of the 2018 Draft and going above pick value to sign him. Looks like they nailed it.”
Skubal is projected to reach the big leagues in 2021.
Tigers’ best defensive prospect
In other MLB Pipeline news, Sergio Alcantara was named the best defensive prospect in the Tigers’ system. Ranked No. 15 in the organization overall, the slick-fielding shortstop has tremendous value in his glove, but leaves a great deal to be desired with the bat. He was given the following assessment.
That Alcantara has now been on the Tigers’ 40-man roster for two years without surpassing the Double-A level speaks to his tremendous defensive value. The 23-year-old is a true plus defender at shortstop with excellent first-step quickness, a slick glove and 70-grade arm strength that generates lasers across the infield. The switch-hitter doesn’t offer nearly as much value with the bat and has near bottom-of-the-scale power, though he does make consistent contact and works his share of walks.
Buck Farmer for Hall of Fame
Buck Farmer, whose electric fastball has dazzled many in the minors but has been often inconsistent and uncontrollable in the majors, has been tapped for induction into the West Michigan Whitecaps Hall of Fame next week.
Farmer went 10-5 with a 2.60 ERA in 18 starts with the Whitecaps and added a scoreless inning in the Midwest League All-Star Game back in 2013. He was quickly called up to the big leagues after hopping over Lakeland and Erie, eventually landing in Detroit. He is the last Tigers prospect remaining in the organization to go from Single-A to the big leagues in the same season
Tigers announce spring non-roster invitees
The Tigers have announced its non-roster invitees to this year’s spring training. The players listed are all excluded from the 40-man roster, but there are many notable names among them. Casey Mize, Matt Manning, Alex Faedo, Tarik Skubal and Joey Wentz headline the prospects included in the invite.
Pitchers and catchers report days
The official “pitcher and catcher report” dates have been released, with the Tigers’ spring season on Wednesday, February 12, marking the official return of professional baseball. This yearly rite is the first date on every baseball fan’s calendar, and a reminder than warmer days are just around the corner.
ICYMI: Pitcher and Catcher report and first full squad workout dates for Cactus and Grapefruit Leagues. pic.twitter.com/Ucxxz1zkiI— Emily Waldon (@EmilyCWaldon) January 15, 2020
FanPulse: The Cheating Scandal
SBNation’s FanPulse poll asked a few questions that are on every baseball fans’ mind at the moment. The following results provide some interesting insight into the opinions of the readers.
The first question asked, “Should those involved in the cheating scandal be allowed to work in MLB again?” Just under 40 percent of respondents answered “Yes” while over 60 percent said “No”.
The next question asked, “What’s the worst MLB cheating scandal ever?” Over 40 percent answered “Black Sox” (though hardly any of the respondents were alive at the time), while “Steroids” took second with a little under 30 percent, “Astros sign-stealing” at around 25 percent and “Pete Rose” essentially getting an honorable mention somewhere around 5 percent.
The third question was “Should the Astros’ World Series win be vacated?” The results for this particular poll are pretty even, with respondents answering “No” just slightly more than “Yes”.
Lastly, fans were asked “Was the Astros’ punishment for cheating harsh enough” with the largest dichotomy of responses, as close to 70 percent said “No” while around 30 percent said “Yes”.
- 2020 BYB Tigers prospect #23: RHP Rony Garcia gives the Tigers a chance to experiment in 2020. Garcia has come up through the minors as a starter, but could move around the bullpen in the majors this year.
- 2020 BYB Tigers prospect #22: SS Adinso Reyes could be a significant offensive piece. The shortstop is carrying some significant momentum into the upcoming season.
- FanGraphs released their 2020 ZiPS projections for the Tigers... and they’re not great. The latest outlook for the team is still pretty bleak, but still more encouraging than in 2019.
- Opinion: MLB misses the mark with Astros’ punishments. The conclusion of the league’s investigation into the Astros’ sign stealing scandal saw punishments handed out to all but those most responsible.
- Tigers projected to select SS Austin Martin in recent mock draft. Baseball America predicts that Detroit will spring for Vanderbilt’s star middle infielder.
- Tigers 2020 roster details: options, service time, payroll, and more. The Tigers have a $100 million payroll for their 26-man roster, barring any late additions.
- Tigers trade LHP Matt Hall to Boston Red Sox for C Jhon Nunez. The left hander was designated for assignment on Monday.
Around the horn
With Houston Asterisks, baseball fans get scammed again. Rockies pitching coach suggests Brewers may have stolen signs during 2018 NLDS. Jim Bowden’s Top 50 prospects for 2020. This is an interesting short article about the various sites of spring training and the history behind many of them, including a mention of Lakeland, FL.