Late Sunday night news broke that the Tigers had made a trade with the Chicago Cubs. The Tigers sent LHP Justin Wilson and back up catcher Alex Avila to the north side of the Windy City for two prospects and either a player to be named later or cash considerations. Those two prospects, ranked #1 and #10 respectively by the MLB Pipeline, were Jeimer (Jay-mer) Candelario and Isaac Paredes.
We all know that Wilson was the closer for the Tigers, once Francisco Rodriguez lost the job, and since obtaining the role Wilson was good. Avila also was having a very nice season after returning to the Tigers this season on a one year deal. So what exactly did the Tigers get for their controllable reliever and rental back up catcher?
Candelario was the Cubs #1 overall prospect according to the MLB Pipeline and #92 in the MLB’s Top 100 prospects. Candelario is a 6’1″ 210-pound, 23-year-old projected corner infielder who switch hits. You may balk at his age, but keep in mind the log jam he was associated with, playing behind guys like Anthony Rizzo and Kris Bryant. In 81 games with the Cubs Triple-A Affiliate, Candelario hit .266/.361/.507 with 12 home runs and 52 RBIs. He also carries a 12.4% walk rate to go along with a 21.8% strikeout rate.
According to the MLB Pipeline:
“A switch-hitter with a fluid stroke from both sides of the plate, he makes consistent hard contact and draws a healthy amount of walks. Most of his power has come in the form of doubles to this point, but he could develop into a 20-homer threat as he adds strength and experience.”
Paredes, the Cubs #10 prospect, is an 18-year-old shortstop who is currently in the Single-A South Bend affiliate of the Cubs. He stands 5’11” and weighs in at 175 pounds, no doubt he will fill out. Though with time to grow here’s what the Pipeline says about Paredes:
“Just 17 years old when he came to the United States for his pro debut last summer, he batted .305 in the Rookie-level Arizona League and earned a promotion to low Class A for the Midwest League playoffs…He has enough loft and bat speed from the right side of the plate to develop into a 15-homer threat. He also has a good feel for hitting, already showing the ability to control the strike zone and use the whole field…Paredes has enough arm strength to play anywhere in the infield, but his fringy speed and quickness limit his range. He could shift to second base but more scouts think he’s destined for third base because he figures to lose a step as he fills out.”
In 91 games for the Cubs Single-A affiliate, Paredes hit .261/.341/.399 with seven home runs and 49 RBIs. He walks 7.9% of the time and only has struck out 13.9%.
Also included in the deal were the provisions for a player to be named later or cash considerations. All in all, these two add depth to our farm system and Candelario now gives the Tigers four prospects in the MLB’s Top-100. He could see the Majors as early as this season or 2018 to be sure.