Detroit Tigers option former Rule 5 draftee as they continue with roster cuts

The Detroit Tigers only have 44 players left in Lakeland for Spring Training with the big league club after another round of cuts has been made.

Tigers second baseman Jace Jung (84) is congratulated as he returns to the dugout.
Tigers second baseman Jace Jung (84) is congratulated as he returns to the dugout. / Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports

It's been a busy spring, even if it has not felt that way. The Detroit Tigers are slowly trimming down their roster and while the first round of cuts seemed more like a formality than anything, this time was different. In the first round of cuts, the Tigers optioned some of their prospects to the minors, the ones who were unlikely to break camp with the team either way.

But on Tuesday, the Detroit Tigers noted some of the other players that would be heading out as the second round of roster cuts ensued. This time, some familiar faces from the 2023 Tigers roster were optioned, and it shakes things up a little bit as the team continues to press on toward Opening Day.

Per the Tigers' tweets on Tuesday from the PR account, the team's roster now stands at 44 players as the team continues to work through Spring Training. Detroit trimmed down their roster with another round of cuts, this time trimming down 10 spots. Some of the notable names from this week's cuts are interesting, beyond just some minor leaguers heading to minor league camp.

While the Tigers had to keep Mason Englert on the big league roster for the 2023 season to keep him with the team, he has since been optioned to the minor leagues. While this makes sense on paper due to his struggles in 2023, it's one of the teams' bullpen pieces that was consistently called upon in 2023.

Detroit Tigers make another round of roster cuts.

Englert was a casualty who spent time with the club in 2023 and will now be heading back to the minors to try and fine-tune some things. But after his performance in 2023, it's understandable. There's still room to further his development and make some changes.

But beyond the former Rule 5 draftee who was optioned to Triple-A, there are still some other players who should catch the eyes of some. Eddys Leonard had been making some noise on the infield but was optioned back to the minors. Wenceel Perez is another player who was optioned that has been making some noise with the bat, however, he is heading back to the minors.

Perez's being optioned is not overly surprising, especially since the team is hoping he can convert to an outfield position and add some more versatility to his profile—which will take time. Beyond that, the team sending Keider Montero back to the minors was a bit interesting.

Montero was one of those players who had a ton of helium around him coming into the spring. It felt like there was a chance he might impress enough to make the big league club, but instead, he'll head back to the minors as well. Lastly, the catching situation still needs some work, but Dillon Dingler will not be part of the solution.

With Carson Kelly swinging like Barry Bonds this spring, the Tigers will roll with Jake Rogers and Carson Kelly behind the plate for the time being heading into 2024. Wilmer Flores was optioned, but that was not really a surprise either, given the logjam of pitchers in the big league rotation and pitching staff as a whole.

Beyond that, the Tigers reassigned four players to minor league camp, and they'll continue ironing out their roster further as the next week progresses in Lakeland.