A soon-to-be 24-year-old who has yet to pitch above Single-A rarely screams “big league potential”. However, Schreiber’s numbers at Class-A West Michigan last year were nothing short of eye-popping:
In 50.1 innings, Schreiber went 5-1 with 11 saves. He posted a 0.54(!) ERA and a 0.66 WHIP. He had a ridiculous 70:8 K:BB ratio. That equates to a 12.52% strikeout rate and a 1.43% walk rate. While he definitely had some luck on his side, his 1.37 FIP and 1.91 xFIP indicate a lot of his success was legitimate.
Schreiber came to the Tigers via the 2016 draft, where he was selected in the 15th round out of the University of Northwestern Ohio. His 2016 was spent in short-season A, where he threw 29.1 innings with a 2.76 ERA and a 1.09 WHIP.
His 2017 numbers were gaudy, but not a lot is known about Schreiber otherwise. Scouting reports are thin on kids from small colleges who get drafted on the third day of the draft.
However, numbers like Schreiber’s don’t come along all that often, and he is worth keeping an eye on as he progresses through Detroit’s system. He’s listed at 6’3 and 215 pounds, so he has the build to be a major league reliever. Strikeout numbers like his tend to point to high velocity, but that is purely speculation.
There’s a real chance all four of these players enjoy a big league career in the Motor City. There’s also a chance none of them do. All prospects are volatile, regardless of the rankings.
Still, this group has shown some intrigue and promise in the Tigers farm system, and it is often the under-the-radar guys who make the biggest impact.
When the Tigers are competing in 3-5 years, players like these will have been the difference maker.