Detroit Tigers may rely on Jermaine Palacios more than expected.
As Spring Training inches closer and closer, the Detroit Tigers are still working on completing their roster construction and preparing for the 2023 season. Earlier this off-season, Jermaine Palacios was added to the Tigers roster on waivers, becoming one of the team's flurry of off-season moves to start the Scott Harris era.
Palacios was claimed off waivers from the Minnesota Twins and then designated for assignment by the Detroit Tigers amid some roster juggling. Currently, he remains with the Tigers organization after not electing free agency.
He's slated for time with Triple-A Toledo and maybe even jumping into the big leagues as needed. Palacios is a 26-year-old infielder who mainly plays the left side. The Tigers have yet to sign a third baseman and may be searching deep within the organization to find someone to eat up innings at third. Palacios is one of the possibilities.
While the team recently acquired infielder Tyler Nevin from the Baltimore Orioles after purchasing his contract, he's not as good an option as Andy Ibañez or even Palacios. After the Winter performance that Palacios showed in the Venezuelan Winter League, it's hard not to think he will get a couple of looks.
If nothing else, Palacios may have earned an extended look during spring ball to see how he can best fit this organization moving forward. Palacios slashed .400/.471/.633 with 13 doubles and five home runs. He played in 32 games and registered 138 plate appearances.
He kept his punchouts down and was seeing the ball well, finding his way on base and driving in 23 runs during the Winter season. There's a lot to be excited about with how he performed this Winter.
It's not to say that this is going to carry over directly into Spring ball or the big leagues, but for a team that still needs to find answers at multiple positions or at least add some depth, it's good to see Palacios finding his way and settling in as he has.
If he can get off on the right foot at camp this Spring, I'd expect him to end up beating out Nevin in terms of ability and value to the team. But, then again, Palacios was moved off the 40-man roster, so there would have to be corresponding moves to ensure he could break camp with the team.
Either way, the strong performance this winter was good for Palacios and good for the Tigers. It gives them options and Palacios some confidence coming into the 2023 season with his new organization.