As promised, I am going to begin doing a mid-season top prospects list. And while I originally thought I would do just a top 20, the more I look at it, the more I like the idea of doing a top 30 for the mid-season. That will start rolling out very soon. To kick it off however, I wanted to take a look at some guys that are currently outside my top 30, but are still very interesting for different reasons. These are guys that could easily climb the rankings by the end of the season, or after the fall instructional league.
Basically, they have talent worth recognizing.
In no particular order…
1. Preston Jamison (LHP)
There isn’t a lot to get excited about with most 30th round selections. However, with Jamison, he is at least worth tracking. He has two things you really have to like. One, he is left-handed. Two, he has size. As 6’6″ and 220 lbs, the mammoth frame suggests a guy who might be able to add significantly to an average fastball currently. Jamison is only 19 years old, as he was drafted out of an Arizona JC earlier this month. He is definitely a project, but one worth keeping an eye on.
2. Chad Smith (RHP)
Smith is a strong armed right-hander that was drafted by the Tigers in 2011 out of USC. There wasn’t a bunch of hoopla surrounding the pick, and it kind of went under the radar, due to an injury that Smith was healing from at the time. The Tigers may have gotten themselves a steal. Smith is 22 already, so there has to be some caution when I post the following numbers, but he is off to a tremendous start. In 7 innings in the GCL so far, he has struck out 13 batters and only allowed one run. It’s going to be interesting to see if he gets some movement upward before the end of the season. His age means that we have to take numbers with a grain of salt until he makes it to Erie.
3. Miguel Paulino (OF)
Paulino was a recent 27th round pick by the Tigers this June. Paulino, who is just 18, has some things going for him. First, he is known to be a really good defender in the outfield already. A good athlete, Paulino has a nice strong frame to work from as well. He is 6’1″ and 185 lbs. The hitting skills have a way to go, but if you dream on Paulino, and the hitting comes along, the Tigers could have themselves a top of the order type player down the road. Like with any other youngster that age, there is still a lot of rawness to his game.
4. Endrys Briceno (RHP)
Briceno is a tall right-handed pitcher that is currently pitching in Connecticut for the Tigers. He is also rail thin at around 150 lbs for a kid that is 6’4″. When you have a frame like that, most scouts assume a jump in velocity as he fills out. The thing with Briceno is, there is already a good deal of arm strength there, as he consistently pumps fastballs in the low 90′s. He is still extremely raw with the rest of his stuff, and knowing how to pitch, but in two years it’s easy to envision a big leap for a kid like this. I would suspect he spends the rest of the season in Connecticut, and we could see him in West Michigan to start the year next year.
5. Alwin Delgado (3B)
I listed Delagado as a 3B, simply because he has a frame that suggests he may move to that position permanently down the road. Currently, Delgado is a SS, who does play some 3rd base on that crowded Gulf Coast League infield. Delgado has some good athleticism, and I could see some advancement in his hit and power tools as he goes forward. At just 19 years old, there is plenty of time for Delgado to develop, and he has shown improvement already. His numbers were drastically better from his first year to his second, and another increase in numbers would be a positive sign for the youngster. Either way, his physicality and athleticism are intriguing.