All the Detroit Tigers’ injury doom doesn’t only bring gloom

DETROIT, MI - MAY 04: Alex Faedo #49 of the Detroit Tigers looks on from the dugout during his Major League debut in game two of a doubleheader against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Comerica Park on May 4, 2022 in Detroit, Michigan. The Pirates defeated the Tigers 7-2. (Photo by Mark Cunningham/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
DETROIT, MI - MAY 04: Alex Faedo #49 of the Detroit Tigers looks on from the dugout during his Major League debut in game two of a doubleheader against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Comerica Park on May 4, 2022 in Detroit, Michigan. The Pirates defeated the Tigers 7-2. (Photo by Mark Cunningham/MLB Photos via Getty Images) /
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The beginning of this season has not been kind to Detroit Tigers fans around the country.

Coming into this year, we knew the Detroit Tigers would be without Spencer Turnbull, Jake Rogers, Kyle Funkhouser, and Jose Cisnero as they have been dealing with pre-existing injuries. Right before the season kicked off, Riley Greene went down with a foot fracture after reports that he was going to break camp with the big league team. From there, the Tigers have been without starting shortstop Javier Baez for a significant period. Casey Mize’s return is still unclear. Matt Manning looks to be making his return to the rotation soon. Now, we are trying to deal with the losses of Austin Meadows, Tyler Alexander, Victor Reyes, and Michael Pineda.

That is an extensive list that does not provide Tiger faithful with much, if any, optimism going forward. However, what we have seen are the debuts of players that many have been hoping for.

Injury provides opportunity.

Joey Wentz – LHP

Joey Wentz was the 40th overall player taken in the 2016 MLB draft by the Atlanta Braves. In 2019, he was acquired by the Detroit Tigers at the deadline, along with Travis Demeritte, for Shane Greene. 

Wentz underwent Tommy John surgery in March of 2020 and returned in 2021, where he was optioned to Double-A Erie and finished the season with an 0-7 record, an ERA just north of five, and 82 strikeouts in 72.0 innings pitched. Despite the numbers, Wentz’s ability to get back on the mound was a great sign.

He made his Major League debut on May 11 against the Oakland Athletics, where he only lasted 2.2 innings and gave up six earned runs.

Beau Brieske – RHP

Like Wentz, Beau Brieske made his debut for the Tigers this season and has provided them with four solid outings thus far.

In 21.0 innings pitched, he has a 3.86 ERA and has continued to provide the ball club with quality innings when they have needed them the most. Beau was selected in the 27th round of the 2019 draft and only pitched 136 innings before being called upon to step into the Tigers rotation.

He possesses a three-pitch mix that includes a high-spin, mid-90s fastball that works up in the strike zone. While the time in the majors might not belong, the experience he is gaining now is only going to benefit him for future success when he is called upon again.

Alex Faedo – RHP

The most notable name on this list might be Alex Faedo.

The 2017 first-round pick was climbing through the minor leagues until he had to undergo Tommy John surgery, and miss the entirety of the 2021 season after COVID did away with the minor leagues in 2020.

The quartet of him, Mize, Matt Manning, and Tarik Skubal was something that all Tiger fans grew more excited about as they continued to grow through the system together. While his debut came as the result of two of his rotation-mates going down with injuries, his performance has shown that he has earned the opportunity to wait for them to now join him in the big leagues.

Through three games started this season, Faedo has limited the walks, continued to produce soft contact, and is giving the Tigers a chance to win each outing. His latest outing in his hometown of Tampa being the most successful to date.

Just a little more patience

That might not be what you want to hear right now. The patience might be wearing thin for Tigers fans, but enjoy the development you are seeing happen each outing. Each start allows for them to develop, and learn, at the highest level. While the Detroit Tigers look to get healthy, this is the best time for these young players to take their lumps, and learn from them.

Once the team is firing on all cylinders, you will come to realize that this period was key to the development of the team.

Related Story. Injury bug has infected the outfield for the Detroit Tigers. light

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