The Detroit Tigers see the future in Colt Keith, sign him to contract extension

New York Yankees v Detroit Tigers
New York Yankees v Detroit Tigers / Mark Cunningham/GettyImages

While the Detroit Lions are marching towards changing the history of their franchise as they face the 49ers in the NFC Championship, the Detroit Tigers decided to join their fellow professional franchise in making headlines today by signing Colt Keith to a six-year contract extension that will be worth up to $82 million dollars.

The Tigers have joined the Brewers in securing a top prospect for their future. This offseason, the Brewers signed Jackson Chourio, ranked as the No. 1 MLB prospect on many lists, to an eight-year contract. For Detroit, this marks the first time the team has committed to a prospect who has yet to play at the major league level. The reasons for this move are quite clear.

Colt Keith has nothing left to prove in the minors

Keith had no problems hitting at both Double-A Erie and Triple-A Toledo, hitting .306/.380/.552 with an OPS of .932 with 27 home runs and 101 RBIs, splitting time between second and third. More than likely, based on where he finished primary playing second at Toledo, there will be a good chance he will be Detroit's everyday second baseman on Opening Day.

Keith, who didn't turn 22 until August, showed an advanced approach at the plate, beyond just the usual batting statistics. Based on batted ball data, he achieved a 40% hard-hit rate, surpassing the International League average of 36%. Demonstrating power at both levels, he maintained an ISO over .200. His standout 6-for-6 game for Erie was voted the top Minor League performance of the year. After being promoted to Toledo, he concluded his Erie season with a 163 wRC+

His journey to bet on himself after Detroit selected him in the short 2020 MLB Draft paid off. For Scott Harris and the new administration, it is a welcoming sight to see the Tigers move towards a new path of perhaps of how they believe the team can be constructed for the future. For the first time in quite some time, the Tigers have aligned themselves as an organization who is now keeping up with the times.

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