Detroit Tigers acquire pitching prospect Elvin Rodriguez to complete Justin Upton trade
Detroit Tigers general manager Al Avila added another prospect to the team’s farm system in the form of pitcher Elvin Rodriguez. Rodriguez is the player to be named later in the Justin Upton trade.
Detroit Tigers fans saw outfielder Justin Upton traded to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at the end of August, capping a successful stint in the Motor City for the veteran.
The Tigers brought in starting pitcher Grayson Long and a player to be named later in the trade, which helped signal the start of a full-on rebuild for Detroit.
Long could be in the Majors with the Tigers as early as next season.
In 121.1 innings for Double-A Mobile this season, the right-hander pitched to a 2.52 ERA, a .226 batting average against, 111 strikeouts and a 1.134 WHIP.
Sporting a fastball, a changeup and a promising slider, Long will likely be one of the first of Detroit’s current top prospects to break the Major League roster.
It wouldn’t be a surprise to see the 6’5” hurler along with Franklin Perez debuting with the Tigers sometime in the second half, if not sooner.
Now, we know player joining Long, Perez and Detroit’s other prospects in the farm system. That would be pitcher Elvin Rodriguez.
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The Tigers announced the move in a tweet on the team’s official Twitter account.
Rodriguez is a right-hander who recently finished the 2017 season with Single-A Burlington in the Anaheim system.
He’s the third different Angels pitching prospect to head to Detroit via trade since the end of last season, joining Long and Victor Alcantara.
Rodriguez throws a fastball, a curveball and a changeup.
In 68 innings split between Burlington and Rookie-Ball, the starter posted a 2.91 ERA, a 1.162 WHIP and 8.1 strikeouts per nine innings.
Still only 19-years-old, Rodriguez found success this season pitching against competition that was on average 2.9 (Single-A) and 2.4 (Rookie-Ball) years older than him.
Looking to the future, Rodriguez provides the team with another pitching prospect to develop over time.
In order to sustain long-term success, the Detroit Tigers will need a farm system that is continually churning out prospects ready to contribute at the Major League level.
Adding Rodriguez gives another pitcher who could play a role in the future.
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He’ll eventually give the team more pitching reinforcements after the likes of Peres, Long, Bryan Garcia, Beau Burrows, Sandy Baez, Mark Ecker and Kyle Funkhouser have all debuted in the Majors.