With the minor league season coming to an end, here is a look at the eight prospects the Detroit Tigers are sending to the Arizona Fall League.
The 2018 season is drawing to a close, and the Detroit Tigers are limping to the finish line in the first year of their rebuild. While the big league product was nothing to write home about, there was a lot to like down on the farm. And even though the season is over, there will still be plenty of Tigers prospects to watch as the winter rolls in.
The Detroit Tigers are sending eight of their high-profile prospects to the Arizona Fall League, where they will compete on the Mesa Solar Sox.
Here’s a look at the great eight, and what they will hope to accomplish down in Arizona.
Baez is the only one of the eight who is still playing. He was promoted to Detroit for one appearance on June 4, and then again when rosters expanded in September. The hard throwing right-hander has now thrown 13 big league innings, with a 3.46 ERA and a 1.08 WHIP. His elite stuff hasn’t really translated to a lot of strikeout stuff, as he only has a 4.85 K/9. The No. 26 ranked Tigers prospect (according to MLB Pipeline) is going to compete for a high-leverage bullpen role next season. The AZL will help him stay sharp.
Jimenez is a 23-year-old right-hander who spent all of 2018 at High-A Lakeland. He earned 15 saves and posted a 3.42 ERA and a 9.18 K/9. Jimenez is a ways away, but like Baez he is a future bullpen piece who could compete for a late-inning role sometime down the line.
Schreiber burst onto the scene in 2017, posting an outstanding 0.54 ERA and a 12.52 K/9. While he didn’t quite replicate those lofty numbers this last season, he still had a solid year. Pitching at Double-A Erie, Schreiber had a 2.48 ERA and a 9.16 K/9. Another future bullpen piece in the Motor City.
Soto is Detroit’s only starting pitcher pitching in the AZL. He made 23 starts, throwing 113.1 innings of 4.45 ERA ball with a 9.13 K/9 and a less than stellar 5.16 BB/9. Detroit’s No. 14 prospect likely won’t pitch much, as his 124 innings from 2017 is his career-high.
Rogers upheld his reputation as an elite defensive backstop, although his offense left something to be desired. Rogers spent the entire season at Double-A Erie, hitting .219/.305/.412 with 17 home runs and seven steals. The power is nice, and the defense is elite, but the 27.5% strikeout rate is deeply concerning. If Rogers can’t put the ball in play, he will max out as a defense-first backup.
Pinero has not gotten as much press as most of the rest of the prospects headed to the AZL, but he had quite a quality season at High-A Lakeland. The 24-year-old infielder slashed .263/.352/.396 with nine home runs and five stolen bases. His 11.2% walk rate and 16.8% strikeout rate are both very solid. Pinero played primarily third base this season, although he has spent some time at first and shortstop as well.
Cameron was one of Detroit’s most talked about prospects, having risen from High-A up to Triple-A. He hit eight home runs and swiped 24 bases, but his high strikeout rate is a bit of a concern. Still, he is the Detroit Tigers center fielder of the future. More at-bats in the AZL will help him cut down on the K’s and hopefully tap into his power.
Woodrow had a nice year at Double-A Erie, hitting .313/.369/.395 with three dingers and 19 stolen bases. The 23-year-old hasn’t shown up on many prospect lists, but a strong performance in the AZL could creep him onto the radar heading into next season.
Continue to check back with us as we provide updates on how our prospects fare in Arizona.