Detroit Tigers News

Three biggest Detroit Tigers spring training storylines

Tigers right fielder Robbie Grossman celebrates after his home run against Yankees pitcher Luis Severino during the second inning of Grapefruit League action at George M. Steinbrenner Field on Sunday, March 20, 2022, in Tampa, Florida.Tigersny
Tigers right fielder Robbie Grossman celebrates after his home run against Yankees pitcher Luis Severino during the second inning of Grapefruit League action at George M. Steinbrenner Field on Sunday, March 20, 2022, in Tampa, Florida.Tigersny /
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(From left) Tigers outfielders Derek Hill, Victor Reyes, and Robbie Grossman in the field during Detroit Tigers spring training on Monday, March 14, 2022, at TigerTown in Lakeland, Florida.Tigers1
(From left) Tigers outfielders Derek Hill, Victor Reyes, and Robbie Grossman in the field during Detroit Tigers spring training on Monday, March 14, 2022, at TigerTown in Lakeland, Florida.Tigers1 /

3) Who wins the last outfield spot for the Detroit Tigers?

If we assume Torkelson and Greene both make the opening day roster, much of the rest is already set with reasonable certainty. Torkelson, Schoop, Baez, Candelario, Barnhart, and Cabrera will occupy the infield with Harold Castro, Eric Haase, and Dustin Garneau playing bench roles (although look out for Kody Clemens, who could be a dark horse here).

In the outfield, that leaves Baddoo, Greene, and Grossman. Assuming Haase will get some repetitions in left field as he did last year, it leaves one outfield spot remaining between Victor Reyes, Derek Hill, and Daz Cameron.

All have positional versatility within the outfield and all have one option remaining. Hill is the best defender of the group and showed some promise toward the end of the 2021 season offensively. Reyes has the edge in terms of experience and he also switch hits, which is a fine commodity when working up a lineup. Cameron, meanwhile, has shown well in his limited spring playing time but has yet to truly establish himself as an MLB player.

My shot-in-the-dark pick here is Derek Hill, who would also platoon well with Baddoo if the organization continues to try and limit his plate appearances against left-handed pitching while also offering a superior defensive output (.312/.333/.459 line against LHP in 2021). Truly, though, I wouldn’t be shocked if any of these three were the choice to head north to start 2022.

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