It’s that time of year again. In fact, the 2013 MLB draft is just a week away, so it’s time to start looking at some of the guys that could be potential Detroit Tigers in the upcoming draft. I’m not sure how many I am going to get to for you all, but I will do my best to get you as much information as possible.
Disclaimer #1: Between my full time job, and my writing responsibilities at a couple different places which includes watching minor league baseball, I just don’t have time to watch college ball and high school baseball. So I have not seen these kids in person. I have watched video on many of them to get my own impressions, but that leads me to my second disclaimer.
Disclaimer #2: I am compiling these scouting reports by using a variety of sources. One of the things about giving scouting reports on high school kids and college kids is that they just don’t get seen as much as minor leaguers or pro players. With high school pitchers going once a week, sites such as Baseball America might see a pitcher once, and then rely on reports from real scouts in baseball. Since outlets like this have better information than I do, but may have seen a guy on a good or bad day, I prefer to combine multiple sources in order to give you all an overview on these players. Some of the places I will use are my friends and colleagues at Bullpen Banter, Scout.com, Baseball America, and Minor League Ball, but there may be more. Essentially my approach is to combine and condense information, as well as sprinkle in my own thoughts. Hope you enjoy.
Chris Anderson, RHP, Jacksonville
Anderson is amongst the relatively low amount of college pitchers who look like mid rotation at best type pitchers. That’s not a knock on Anderson or any of the others, because a mid rotation starter is a valuable thing. I’ve seen Anderson anywhere from 15 to 40 in mocks which covers both of the Tigers picks. He has the build the Tigers look for, tall and sturdy at 6’4″ and 225lbs. His fastball resides in the low 90’s, his slider is a swing and miss pitch, and his change is usable at this point and may become a bit above average down the road.
Austin Wilson, OF, Stanford
Wilson was a big time talent coming out of high school a few years ago, and decided to take that talent to Stanford. Wilson is a prototypical right fielder with a strong arm, and the power projection with the bat to man a corner outfield spot. Here is an issue though. Stanford hitters don’t seem to translate to success in the pros. Wilson has had an up and down career, and while he flashes tools, he doesn’t always put them into use on the field. Wilson is the kind of player the Tigers seem to favor however, so he can’t be ignored in a discussion about the Tigers’ potential picks. I will go on record as saying, I hope Wilson isn’t the Tigers selection.
Eric Jagielo, 3B, Notre Dame
Jagielo’s value will depend largely upon whether or not a team believes he can stick at 3rd base or not. If they do believe that to be the case, he could go higher than the Tigers first pick. Jagielo has a sweet left handed swing that uses the whole field, while showing above average power. According to reports he has learned to manage the strike zone better than in years past, and should hit for average as well. His defense at third is pretty solid, though he lacks the quickness to become a premium defender there. I don’t see the Tigers going in this direction, despite Jim Callis mocking Jagielo to the Tigers over at Baseball America at one point.
Phillip Ervin, OF, Samford
Ervin is I think becoming an undervalued player, in part due to him struggling with an ankle injury this spring. However, he doesn’t have the same question marks with his bat as some of the bigger names out there like Judge and Wilson. Ervin is a good athlete, and while his tools aren’t particularly loud in any one area, he could be described as average or above in all five tools. He is likely going to have to live out his power projection as most people seem to think he won’t stick in center field down the road. Still, the Tigers could do worse than a selection of Ervin, especially if they could get him in the supplemental round.
Devin Williams, RHP, Hazlewood HS (Miss.)
Williams is a guy that is getting late buzz as the draft approaches. I hadn’t really heard much of him until I saw his name over at Tigstown so I decided to do some research. Williams has that projectable frame that teams look for, and he already sits low 90’s with his fastball. He shows a quality slider from time to time, but right now his change up looks like it could be plus down the road. There are some issues mechanically with Williams, but his arm shows as quick and if he irons out the other things, he could really develop.