Detroit Tigers select Victor Reyes in Rule 5 Draft

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DETROIT, MI - OCTOBER 18: A detail of a Detroit Tigers hat with an official postseason logo is seen on the bat rack in the udgout againstthe New York Yankees during game four of the American League Championship Series at Comerica Park on October 18, 2012 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images)
DETROIT, MI - OCTOBER 18: A detail of a Detroit Tigers hat with an official postseason logo is seen on the bat rack in the udgout againstthe New York Yankees during game four of the American League Championship Series at Comerica Park on October 18, 2012 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images) /
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The Detroit Tigers used their first pick in the 2017 Rule 5 Draft to select outfielder Victor Reyes from the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Many people thought the Detroit Tigers would use the Rule 5 draft to bolster their bullpen. They were frequently connected to flame-thrower Nick Burdi of the Minnesota Twins, who would have missed the first half of the season recovering from Tommy John surgery.

The Tigers went a different direction, selecting Arizona outfielder Victor Reyes with the first pick.

Reyes, 23, hit very well at Double-A last season. In 479 at-bats he hit .292 with 18 stolen bases and a 110 wRC+.

He hit .303 with 20 stolen bases the season prior at High-A.

The switch-hitter profiles more as a fourth outfielder with speed. His power is still developing, but his contact-oriented swing will likely play very well at the cavernous Comerica Park. Likewise, his speed will help him develop into a strong corner outfield defender.

Additionally, Reyes is capable of playing center field if necessary.

At 23 years old, the Tigers saw a player who is ready to contribute at the major league level sooner rather than later. Reyes may never develop into a superstar, but in an offense that lacks speed and left-handed hitting (even after the signing of Leonys Martin) Reyes should find himself earning plenty of at-bats.

Elsewhere in the Rule 5 Draft

The Rule 5 draft concluded with a former Tiger hearing his name called.

Left-handed reliever and former Tigers center fielder Anthony Gose was selected by the Houston Astros.

Gose signed a minor league deal with the Texas Rangers.

He is trying to reach the major leagues as a relief pitcher.

It looks like he will get his chance with the defending champion Houston Astros, who desperately needed a left-hander in their bullpen.

Gose can hit 95+ mph with his fastball, so the Astros are gambling that he will be able to find some success on the mound despite limited experience as a pitcher.

Next: Tigers should not pursue Clint Frazier in Fulmer trade talks

The Rule 5 draft is a great, inexpensive way for teams to find controllable big-league talent. Here’s to hoping Reyes finds his role in Detroit and helps the ballclub as the rebuild continues.

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