Lakeland Flying Tigers
In a week that featured a few rainouts, the Flying Tigers went 3-2 to climb to within a game of the .500 mark. Lakeland sits in third place in the Florida State League North Division at 21-22.
Faedo Bounces Back
Last week, we wondered how Alex Faedo would bounce back from his first rough start as a pro. He responded emphatically, blanking Tampa (N.Y. Yankees) on two hits over seven innings. Faedo earned the win for his effort, the first as a pro for last year’s first rounder.
Faedo’s outing also earned him the Florida State League Pitcher of the Week award. That makes it four straight weeks a Detroit Tigers minor leaguer has won a Pitcher of the Week award. A Tigers pitcher has now won a weekly award at each level this season, with Blaine Hardy (International League – AAA), Beau Burrows and Spencer Turnbull (Eastern League – AA), Alex Faedo (Florida State League – A+) and Eudis Idrogo (Midwest League – A) all being honored.
Elsewhere in the Lakeland rotation, lefty Gregory Soto continues to pile up the strikeouts and walks. After an 11-day layoff following a five-walk outing, Soto pitched well on Monday. The southpaw struck out seven in seven innings, and issued two walks.
Soto has posted high strikeout and walk rates throughout his minor league career. He’s fanning batters at a rate of 10.1/9 this year, right in line with his career rate of 10.0. However, his walk rate has jumped to 8.0/9, the highest since the 8.7 he put up as an 18-year old in 2013.
Pitching dominates any Detroit Tigers prospect list you’ll find, but the vast majority of them are righties. Soto is the most well-regarded of the lefties, but could become the next Jairo Labourt, if he doesn’t improve his control.
A big reason for the Flying Tigers recent improvement has been an improved offense. Daz Cameron is riding a nine-game hitting streak, and has boosted his average to .293. One of Detroit’s top outfield prospects, Cameron displayed some of the power he’s been missing since joining the organization, launching a pair of homers Wednesday night.
Cameron wasn’t the only Flying Tiger to go deep twice this week. First baseman Dylan Burdeaux homered twice on Tuesday, and drove in a career-high five. A 20th round pick last year, Burdeaux has been garnering the majority of the playing time at first for Lakeland since Blaise Salter was promoted to Erie.