Detroit Tigers Top 30 Prospects for 2024: #13 Troy Melton

MLB: Comerica Park
MLB: Comerica Park / Kirby Lee/GettyImages

Our 2024 top prospects list keeps rolling along with the No. 13 spot, SP Troy Melton. Melton was drafted in the fourth round in the 2022 MLB Draft out of San Diego State, a place with no shortage of big league alums. The list of big leaguers to come of out SDSU include Hall of Famer Tony Gwynn, Bud Black, Stephen Strasburg, Ty France. former Tiger Quintin Berry, and current Tiger Garrett Hill. Melton is off to a good start in being the next Aztec to make the majors.

Melton is just a really solid arm. His fastball averaged 95.9 mph in Low-A Lakeland last season, according to some data gathered by our very own Rogelio Castillo. He also struck out 11.14 batters per nine. That was only in 26.2 IP, but there was a lot to like.

He would later get promoted to High-A West Michigan, where he would spend the rest of the season. In 65.1 IP, he had a 2.48 ERA and a 2.95 FIP. The strikeouts went down a tad, but he was just really effective at getting guys out.

Melton has already improved and developed since college, His fastball has increased in velocity, and he added a cutter to his arsenal last season, which had a 34.5 whiff rate in Lakeland.

MLB Pipeline seems to like his overall profile, but views him as a bit of a project. Here's some of what they have to say:

"Melton came out of the Draft with a good starter’s arsenal, anchored by a fastball that sits in the low 90s but reached 97 mph in his pro debut last September. That fastball is now up to the mid-90s in 2023, bringing more excitement to his profile. His slider draws swings-and-misses at times but is more of a slow breaking pitch in the low 80s, and he's added an upper-80s cutter for another look. He throws an upper-80s changeup too, but the pitch can get a little firm."

MLB Pipeline

They would go on to say that he "might take some time" to develop. The biggest reason for that is Melton is actually a converted catcher. He's only been pitching full-time since 2019, his freshman year at SDSU. He's still a little green when it comes to the mound.

With that being said, he's already shown a tremendous amount of growth during his short time in pro ball. With some further refinement, he could ascent to one of the top pitching prospects in the organization.

Melton is somebody who could easily rise into the top 10 next year — dare we say top five. There's a lot of potential here. He could be one of the top risers in the Tigers farm system in 2024.