Detroit Tigers: Is Colt Keith moving up ahead of schedule?

Erie SeaWolves infielder Colt Keith works at third base during practice at UPMC Park in Erie.
Erie SeaWolves infielder Colt Keith works at third base during practice at UPMC Park in Erie. / GREG WOHLFORD/ERIE TIMES-NEWS / USA

Detroit Tigers may see Colt Keith rise through ranks quick.

The Detroit Tigers came into the 2023 season not expecting much from their prospects. Granted, the ones on the roster had some expectations to live up to, but within the ranks, there were not a ton of high-level prospects left.

When it comes to the Detroit Tigers farm system, it is not the most exciting. There are certainly players to watch and be excited about, but from a depth standpoint, it's not pretty at all. Perhaps the most exciting prospect is Colt Keith, who has started garnering some attention beyond that. He hit for the cycle recently and has been a more frequent name on top prospect lists.

Keith is a 21-year-old third baseman who has been able to move around the infield and slot in as needed where the Tigers would like him to be. Keith has a ton of projectability to work with and should be an exceptional addition to the Tigers moving forward.

There's been a growing narrative about Keith regarding his development path. Some folks have argued that Keith deserves a chance to jump up to Detroit and see if he can hack it with the big leaguers.

Keith is currently stationed in Double-A with a .321/.394/.570 over 40 games. He has ten doubles, two triples, nine home runs, and 35 total RBI to his credit. This comes after an insane performance out in the Arizona Fall League.

Player Development is not something that has a linear path. Players take longer; players rise quickly, and some never pan out. There's a lot to like about Keith, and his development seems like one of those players who is not taking the linear path.

Keith could very well find himself in Detroit if the development path continues on this road. There's a case to be made on Keith skipping out on Triple-A. While the thought is that Justyn-Henry Malloy was ahead of him on the organizational depth chart, but due to Keith's development path, the Tigers may have some decisions to make.

If the Tigers want to test the waters with Keith, the opportunity is there to do so. He would have the chance to join the team's 40-man roster and then slot into the big leagues and see if he can hack it. He has the versatility to play second or third base which would allow the Tigers a chance to get him in some games and get him some at-bats.

There's no telling what the Tigers will do, and if they will have Keith skip the Triple-A level, but there's some intrigue to see if Keith can make the jump into the MLB from the Double-A level. Even if it's a shortened stint, it would be interesting to see if it works out.

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