Detroit Tigers: Prospects recently added to 40-man roster most likely to make 2018 Opening Day unit
First, let’s remove from this discussion the unlikely players to make the jump to Detroit next spring.
Leading the way is Alcantara.
A glove-first shortstop, Alcantara’s future value is most likely going to come from his defensive work.
While he did hit .266 with a .334 on-base percentage at stops with Advanced-A Visalia in the Arizona system and Detroit’s Advanced-A affiliate in Lakeland—where the competition was, respectively, on average 2.6 and 2.7 years older than him— Alcantara is still a few years out from reaching the Majors.
There’s also Soto and Jimenez.
Both had strong seasons in 2017, with Soto pitching to a 2.25 ERA, 144 strikeouts and a 1.306 WHIP in 124 innings spanning 23 starts.
Those starts came split between Single-A West Michigan and Lakeland.
Jimenez also played for West Michigan and Lakeland. However, unlike Soto, Jimenez pitched in relief.
The right-hander worked to a 2.13 ERA, a 1.125 WHIP and 60 strikeouts compared to just 15 walks and 12 earned runs allowed.
As a reliever, he could very well shoot through Detroit’s minor league system in 2018, similar to Zac Reininger, Jairo Labourt and Bryan Garcia this past season.
If that happens, it could put the reliever in a position to debut later in the season as opposed to Opening Day.