Right-handed pitching prospect Alex Faedo has taken a step forward this season in the Detroit Tigers system, looking more like the strikeout pitcher he was in college.
As of late, Alex Faedo has really put it together 3 quality starts in his last 4 outings with a 1.69 ERA and 32 strikeouts over that span. Amidst the pressure of the College World Series, he was relieved after being chosen in the first round of the 2017 Draft by the Detroit Tigers. He took that with him to go on to win the national championship with the Florida Gators later that week, while also being named the CWS MVP.
Following the World Series, he took the rest of the season off and made his pro debut in 2018 with the Lakeland Flying Tigers. It didn’t take very long until he was called up to Double-A Erie, where he has been since. He had his struggles there last season, however. He pitched to a 4.95 ERA last season in Erie, and he was pretty vulnerable to the long ball, giving up 15 in 12 starts with the Seawolves.
A lot of the talk surrounding Faedo was about how his velocity never developed. He sits 90-92 mph and tops out at 93 mph. He came out of college and was considered a top 100 prospect, but he kind of slipped off because of the velocity concerns. This resulted in his low strikeout numbers in 2018, where he possessed an 8.2 K/9.
Because of his low-90s velocity, in order to be effective, he must be able to command his slider and changeup, which he has done well in 2019. While he has given up 11 home runs already, he is minimizing other mistakes, leading to his 3.70 ERA and 11.2 K/9 ratio.
The 23-year old is third in the Eastern League in strikeouts with 82, and his fellow teammate Matt Manning leads the league with 88. Faedo has also had three games this season with 10+ strikeouts. He is punching hitters out in bunches, which we saw him do as a Gator in college, where he had a similar K/9 of 11.4 during his final season in Gainesville.
Once Faedo can limit the hard contact, he will be on track to be a big league starter. He has great stuff and has the ability to get hitters out via the strikeout, which is so coveted in today’s major leagues. I project to see him called up to the big leagues in late 2020.