On the final day of the 2021 MLB Draft, Detroit Tigers continue to address the lack of pitching depth in rounds 16-20.
The Detroit Tigers front office must be fans of Fallout Boys’ 2006 single “This Ain’t a Scene, It’s An Arms Race” or the real truth which is Detroit continued to load up on arms with potential upside as they close out the 2021 MLB Draft.
Let’s take a closer look at who Detroit landed in rounds 16-20:
Detroit Tigers 16th Round Pick-Jack Anderson-RHP-Florida State University
Anderson, who is from nearby Tampa, was one of the most improved pitchers in the Semioles’ rotation. He had an uptick in velocity, getting up to around 94 MPH with a good change-up that rides in on lefties and a slider to go along with his fastball.
He is a redshirt sophomore so he could come back to Tallahassee again but he was drafted before, by the New York Yankees in the 36th round out of high school in 2018. He is primarily a reliever, picking up five saves this season. He is the first FSU pitcher to be selected by the Tigers since Drew Carlton in 2017, who is currently pitching in Toledo.
Jack Anderson Stats:
Detroit Tigers 17th round selection-RHP Aaron Haase-Wichita State University
Haase, who stands at 5’8, 193 lbs, has no relation to current Tigers player Eric Haase, who hails from Amarillo, Texas, was a reliever for the Shockers. He started putting it together this season with a two-pitch mix, mainly a fastball and a slider.
The slider continues to fit the motif among several of the Tigers pitchers drafted. Per Mike Rosenbaum of Prep Baseball Report, his fastball sits around 92-96 MPH with a spin rate of 2400-2600 that can hit the top of the strike zone and a slider has swing and miss action, with an impressive spin rate of 2600-2700.
Aaron Haase Stats:
Detroit Tigers 18th Round Pick-Ben Malgeri-OF-Northeastern University
Ben Malgeri stands at 6’2 and bats right-handed, originally went to Holy Cross in Worcester, MA before transferring to Northeastern University in Boston. He played in the Cape Cod League for Harwich this season, batting .262/.367/.405. He is a speedy outfielder who can play all three positions as he saw most of his time in centerfield.
Ben Malgeri Stats:
Detroit Tigers 19th Round Pick-Justice Bigbie-1B-Western Carolina University
For anyone who has seen players in the Northwoods League, Justice Bigbie may sound familiar. He was awarded the Star of the Stars MVP in the Northwoods All-Star Game playing for the Madison Mallards. On his second time back up in 2019, he improved his batting average from .283 in 2018 to .346 in 2019 and hit safely in 29 straight games. The 6’3 utility player, who can play the outfield, first base, and third, is known to a good leader in the clubhouse and a very good work ethic.
Justice Bigbie stats:
Detroit Tigers 20th Round Pick-JD McLaughlin-OF-Central Arizona University
McLaughlin started his collegiate career at Oregon State before going back closer to home at Central Arizona College (he grew up in Chandler, Arizona). Another outfielder who bats right-handed still has room to grow and among the last picks of the draft, is the youngest as he does not turn 21 until December 20th. He is known for power and athleticism.