1. Jacob Turner, P – This ace in the making dropped to the Tigers because of signability (sound familiar). He’s got an excellent fastball. He’s working on improving the command of his breaking ball. He’s also developing a change-up as his third pitch, which he didn’t need in high school.
2. Austin Jackson, OF – Jackson was the center piece for the deal that sent Curtis Granderson to New York and Edwin Jackson to Arizona. He’s got the tools to be an everyday centerfielder, but I don’t think he’s ready yet. He’s getting the shot this spring to be in Detroit, but he really needs a half season in Triple A.
3. Casey Crosby, P – Crosby has shown no ill effects from Tommy John surgery. He’s got a 2-seam and a 4-seam fast ball; the 4-seamer is lights out, while the 2-seamer is still a work in progress. His curveball, when effective, is a definite out pitch. He’s working on a change up, which he’ll need to be a starter. He’s easily a mid-rotation starter.
4. Daniel Schlereth, P – Schlereth, another key part of the Granderson/Jackson trade, is a fast moving relief prospect. He got his feet wet with Arizona last year and has the stuff to be a closer in the majors. Look for him to start the season with Detroit and a possible replacement for Jose Valverde when his contract is up.
5. Scott Sizemore, 2B – Sizemore will be able to prove his worth this year. After a breakout season split between Double A and Triple A, he’s the default starting second baseman this year. He’s a guy that can do a lot, but none of his skills stands out. He’s a disciplined hitter with little pop. He’s also an average defender.
6. Alex Avila, C – Avila is the catcher of the future for the Tigers. He’s got pop and is patient. He needs to work on his strike outs, but will be a solid catcher if nothing changes. He’s made significant progress defensively, so sticking at the position isn’t a concern.
7. Andy Oliver, P – Oliver is a high upside arm that looked pretty well in the Arizona Fall League. He needs at least one more season in the minors to work on his command, but a late season bullpen audition isn’t out of the question.
8. Ryan Striebly, 1B – He’s the big build first baseman with power. Unfortunately, he’s block by another one (Miguel Cabrera). He’ll be waiting for Cabrera to be the full time DH or to be traded to somewhere else.
9. Wilkin Ramirez, OF – Ramirez is one of those tools guys that people drool over. He’s coming along, but right now he needs to turn the tools into production. He needs to work on making contact if he wants to succeed.
10. Cody Satterwhite, P – Satterwhite appears to be a power reliever, but there are questions about his health. He’s also working on improving his command. I could see him getting a shot next season.
Tags: 30 Teams in 30 Days, Baseball, Baseball Preview, Detroit Tigers, Top 10 Prospects