Detroit Tigers: Tyler Collins Has Earned A Roster Spot for 2016
Aug 16, 2015; Houston, TX, USA; Detroit Tigers outfielder Tyler Collins hits an RBI single in the eighth inning against the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Of the Detroit Tigers’ prospects, Tyler Collins showed the most in 2015 to earn a roster spot for the 2016 season.
The Detroit Tigers’ farm system has been depleted the last number of years to say the least, but they have developed a few players along the way in James McCann, Nick Castellanos, and Tyler Collins. Castellanos and McCann have guaranteed starting spots on the 2016 roster, but Collins’s roster spot still seems up for grabs.
As of now, the Tigers’ roster has Anthony Gose and J.D. Martinez as the only outfielders who will return in 2016 with Rajai Davis entering free agency. Rumors went around before Yoenis Cespedes was traded that he could return to Detroit, but he has most likely played himself into a massive contract with his second half with the New York Mets.
In 2015, Collins produced at a .266/.316/.417 split with 4 home runs and 25 RBI. Those splits are better than both McCann (.264/.397/.387) and Castellanos (.255/.308/.419).
At the very least, Collins should serve as the fourth outfielder for the Tigers. He can serve as a left-handed bat with punch off of the Tigers bench. He can serve as a platoon with whichever free agent outfielder the Tigers sign this offseason.
Finally, Collins has proven he can serve as a viable option who is home grown and will not cost the Tigers. They will have to spend to sign two starters, an outfielder, and a number of relievers. The Tigers should not spend extra money on an extra outfielder when they have a strong option on the roster. Instead of spending money on an extra outfielder, they can try to upgrade in the quality of free agents they will sign.