The Detroit Tigers’ system is full of young projectable talent and a lot of left handed pitchers who are all trying their best to stick on as starting pitchers.
Next year’s Florida State League team in Lakeland should be a fun one to watch with most of the young talent either starting there or moving there at some point in the year.
Below are my top 16 prospects with 2012 opening day age, position, and comments on each player. Below the top 16 is a small list of additional notable names. Enjoy.
|1||Jacob Turner (20-RHP)||Have always been a fan and still am. He has the frame, repertoire, and stuff to be an ace. His fastball reaches mid-90s and he couples it with a plus curve and above-average change. He may need time in AAA but he is close to MLB ready and won’t be 21 until May.|
|2||Nick Castellanos (20-3B)||Hit .332/.382/.470 after April and the hit tool is legit. I look forward to seeing him in the FSL next year because the reports on his defense vary completely. He strikes out way too much right now and it’s not at the expense of power. He has room to fill out more and the power should come.|
|3||Drew Smyly (22-LHP)||He is a polished lefty with a low-90s fastball, curve, and change and throws all for strikes and commands them all well. He has some room to add velocity but I think he is what he is. Has a shot to be a #3 starter and very probable shot to be at least a #5. Dominated in eight AA games.|
|4||Casey Crosby (23-LHP)||Elbow problems lead to a horrible 2010 after a stellar 2009 that left me wanting to see more of this kid. His command is below average but he has a fastball that reaches mid-90s and a good curveball. If he cannot develop the change-up and stay healthy he may be destined for the pen but I hold hope for him.|
|5||Eugenio Suarez (20-SS)||Intriguing prospect that can handle SS with ease and has some pop, speed, and patience. He is far from a sure thing and could fizzle out at higher levels but I like the potential all-around game here.|
|6||Andrew Oliver (24-LHP)||A lot like Crosby with good stuff but lacks command and control. I see a more realistic spot for him in the pen but with an outside shot at being a back-end starter who mixes in a brilliant game or two with some awful ones.|
|7||James McCann (21-C)||Very solid behind the plate and some scouts believe he has the ability to be at least an average hitter for power but the batting average may never be great. I am hoping to see him in the FSL to get a better look at him.|
|8||Aaron Westlake (23-1B)||Was a fan at Vanderbilt and still like him but he needs to start in the FSL next year. He has above-average power and decent patience but strikes out a lot and is relegated to 1B duties but plays the position well.|
|9||Brenny Paulino (19-RHP)||Very raw with a fastball that reaches mid-90s and he has projectable frame to add more consistent velocity. His secondary pitches are both below-average and will need to develop them but the Tigers are seemingly moving him quickly as he made it to the FSL as an 18 year old. His command and control are both below average as well. He has the chance to be a big mover if he can develop but should not be rushed.|
|10||Danry Vasquez (18-OF)||Toolsy kid with plenty of room to add muscle and projects to hit for power and uses the whole field but is very raw and a project. He lacks discipline at the plate and he played RF in his Rookie League debut although he seems to have the tools for CF. Not sure if he can handle it, though.|
|11||Alex Burgos (21-LHP)||A finesse lefty who keeps the ball down and keeps hitters off balance with his average-or-better secondary pitches. His fastball sits 88-90 and he is small but another good showing and I will be forced to move him up the rankings. Should be in pitcher friendly FSL next year.|
|12||Tyler Collins (21-OF)||Showed a good all-around game in his debut with some power and speed but he could learn a little more patience and is relegated to a corner outfield spot. If his all-around game continues to develop he could be a top 5 guy in this system.|
|13||Brian Flynn (22-LHP)||The 6’8” pitcher had a good debut and kept the ball in the park. He has a fastball that he can dial up to the mid-90s but his slider is inconsistent and I have not read anything about a change up. Seems like a power reliever to me but easily has the frame to start if he can develop his secondary pitches.|
|14||Kyle Ryan (20-LHP)||Has tons of room to fill out his frame and add velocity to go with his good control but lacks anything above-average and his secondary pitches are all close to below-average right now. Could play in FSL but a repeat of A-ball is likely.|
|15||Dan Fields (21-OF)||Tools are still there and he shows some patience but not only has he not made progress repeating the FSL but he actually went backwards. Strikes out a lot and still learning the game. Looks to be a 4th OFer right now who can handle all OF positions.|
|16||Dean Green (22-1B)||A lot like Westlake but behind him a bit. He is a big hitter with good power but strikes out a bunch and is below average at 1B. Will probably be in A-ball and turns 23 next year. Will need to end the year in FSL to develop.|
Filed under: On the Farm - Prospects Tagged: | 2012 Top Prospects, Aaron Westlake, Adam Wilk, Alex Burgos, Andrew Oliver, Avisail Garcia, Brenny Paulino, Brian Flynn, Casey Crosby, Dan Fields, Danry Vasquez, Dean Green, Detroit Tigers, Drew Smyly, Eugenio Suarez, Jacob Turner, James McCann, Kyle Ryan, Nick Castellanos, Prospects, Tyler Collins, Tyler Gibson