Detroit Tigers Top 30 Prospects for 2024: #11 Justice Bigbie

Continuing the countdown of Detroit Tigers prospects ahead of 2024, its no. 11, Justice Bigbie.
Detroit Tigers outfielder Justice Bigbie warms up before playing for the Salt River Rafters in the
Detroit Tigers outfielder Justice Bigbie warms up before playing for the Salt River Rafters in the / Evan Petzold / USA TODAY NETWORK
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As we continue with the countdown of Detroit Tigers prospects here on Motor City Bengals, we continue working through the Top 15. At 11h overall on the list is Justice Bigbie, the former Western Carolina University standout. He's been with Detroit for several seasons now and is coming into his own.

Bigbie was a 19th-round draft choice of the Tigers back in 2021, signing and joining the team's affiliates. He's gotten his feet wet and moved through the organization quite well thus far, advancing to Triple-A in 2023. He also went west and participated in the Arizona Fall League last fall.

Bigbie's a high-upside guy who has the potential to be an impressive player within the Tigers organization if things do click for him. The right-handed hitter has a 6-foot-2, 200-pound frame with some versatility to move around the diamond. He's listed as a corner infielder and outfielder but likely projects in an outfield role moving forward.

It's mostly what Bigbie has done for the Tigers while playing for the team's affiliates in recent years. He has strength and some twitch to handle a corner, but the defense is not exactly the selling point with this profile; the bat will lead the way.

Detroit Tigers prospect Justice Bigbie is a breakout candidate in 2024.

Frame & Stance

He may not be the biggest and most physical presence out there. However, the right-handed hitter has strength throughout the frame and a build that projects. He could still stand to add some muscle mass, but he has potential with the body.

It's a right-handed stroke with a good trait to like. He sets up with a slightly bent knee stance, an even base that's slightly spread, and higher set hands, with a bat real high around the ears, in his stance. He uses a hanging leg lift trigger, sinking ever so slightly into his backside with the hands getting to a hitting position as he loads.

Here's the critical thing to note. He has a great sense of the barrel, being able to get on a good path to contact. On top of that, he's often able to rotate and turn hard through the swing, showing some core strength and power that can prove deadly.

Hit/Power

As mentioned, there's core power here and good rotation with the ability to turn hard through the swing. His feel for the barrel gives him the recipe for success. He handles velocity well and can pull the ball when he wants to. It's a pretty clean approach that leads me to believe there's an upside with the power here.

The bat-to-ball impresses and is what drives his hit-tool profile. He's been given grades in the 50-55 range on the 20-80 scale, but there's something to be said about the fluidity of the stroke and control for the barrel. With the improvements he's made to his swing and core strength that shows, his power has taken a jump.

There's still room for him to tap into more down the line for Detroit. He may not be the next greatest prospect in the Tigers system, but there is certainly value to keeping eyes on him with above-average projecting tools at the dish.

Stats in 2023

As mentioned above, he cracked the Triple-A roster in 2023 but spent most of his year with Double-A Erie. In Double-A, Bigbie slashed .362/.421/.564 with 13 doubles, 12 home runs, and 43 RBI with 22 walks and 34 punchouts. He earned his call-up, which did not go as swimmingly for him.

In Triple-A, Bigbie slashed just .275/.345/.392 with four extra-base hits, five walks, and 15 strikeouts over 51 at-bats. But he got a taste of Triple-A and got his feet wet at the next level, which is crucial in itself.

This all came before he headed to Arizona for fall ball, playing in 20 games with the Salt River Rafters, slashing .292/.374/.375 with four extra-base hits and eight RBI. He walked ten times and struck out ten times, logging 72 at-bats in the campaign out west.

Outlook for Justice Bigbie with the Detroit Tigers

Looking ahead, Bigbie still has a chance to be something for Detroit. It could be something great if he can continue to improve his development. He has tools to like and is a player that Detroit Tigers fans should know.

He's eleventh in our countdown of Tigers prospects, and with a hit/power profile like he has, it's easy to see why. He's made serious strides in his development and continues to make some noise. He needs to put it all together for the Tigers.

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