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Detroit Tigers: Top 10 Prospects Following 2016 Season

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Feb 23, 2016; Lakeland, FL, USA; Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Joe Jimenez (77) warms up during the Detroit Tigers spring training camp at Joker Merchant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports
Feb 23, 2016; Lakeland, FL, USA; Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Joe Jimenez (77) warms up during the Detroit Tigers spring training camp at Joker Merchant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports /
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Sep 24, 2013; Minneapolis, MN, USA; A general view of a Detroit Tigers hat a glove before a game against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports /

8. Spencer Turnbull

Position: Starting Pitcher
2016 Affiliate: Lakeland Tigers

Turnbull missed a significant chunk of 2016 due to injury, but during the 12 starts he did make this season, the 24-year-old showed why he could be a fixture as part of Detroit’s pitching staff.

2016 Stats

The starter posted a 3.45 ERA in 12 starts, striking out 39 in 44.1 innings pitched. These numbers were similar to the season he turned in back in 2015. During that campaign, the right-hander pitched to an 11-3 mark while recording a 3.01 ERA. He also fanned 106 batters in 116.2 innings pitched.

Future Role

If he continue to log innings for Detroit’s minor league affiliates, he could very well end up in the Tigers rotation in the future. Turnbull’s fastball-slider combination would play well as a starter.

The former second-round pick will have plenty of competition for a rotation spot once he reaches the point where he could be potentially called up. Detroit currently has Justin Verlander and Jordan Zimmermann under contract, while Michael Fulmer, Daniel Norris and Matt Boyd figure to be around for the long haul.

This is all without mentioning a handful of other names who will appear on this list who could compete with Turnbull. However, if the right-hander can pitch to his potential, it will be hard to keep him off the Major League roster when the time comes.

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Feb 27, 2016; Lakeland, FL, USA; Detroit Tigers player Mike Gerber during media photo day at Joker Marchant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports /

7. Mike Gerber

Position: Outfielder
2016 Affiliate: Erie SeaWolves

Since joining the Detroit Tigers organization as a 15th-round pick in 2014, all Mike Gerber has done is produce at the plate.

The ultra-productive (sensing a theme?) outfielder hit .298 with a .367 on-bae percentage in his first 65 professional games, stuffing the stat sheet in the process. During that year with Connecticut and Western Michigan, Gerber scored 44 runs while collecting 42 RBI, 19 doubles, nine stolen bases, seven home runs and four triples.

He followed that up with a stellar 2015 season for the Whitecaps. Over 135 games and 583 plate appearances, Gerber drove in 76 runs while scoring 74. He also managed a .355 on-base percentage while collecting 31 doubles, 16 stolen bases, 13 home runs and 10 triples.

2016 Stats

The 2016 campaign saw a promotion to both Lakeland and Erie, and it seemed that the step up in competition didn’t faze Gerber. Over 132 and 563 plate appearances games, his stat line very much resembled the one he compiled a season before.

With both minor league affiliates, the 24-year-old hit .276 with a .345 on-base percentage, 80 RBI, 69 runs scored, 30 doubles, 18 home runs, eight stolen bases and six triples.

Future Role

If Gerber can continue to produce at the same rate he has during the last three seasons, he’ll be a part of Detroit’s active roster for years to come. It doesn’t hurt that he can play all three outfield positions.

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