Prospects. Prospects. Prospects. That’s all Detroit Tigers fans have been hearing since the fire sale that began last season. And recently each media outlet has given out their top-100 prospect list.
In one list, the Tigers had three players selected as top-100, with recently acquired Franklin Perez coming in at #35. Also on the Baseball America list where Alex Faedo (50) and Matt Manning (78). This is somewhat uncharted territory for the Tigers, who last had three players land in the top-100 of Baseball America back in 2011.
(Those players were third baseman Nick Castellanos, outfielder Avisail Garcia and right-handed reliever Bruce Rondon.)
— anthony fenech (@anthonyfenech) January 22, 2018
By all accounts, the Tigers’ farm system is definitely better than it was last season. But one reporter doesn’t think as highly as most other outlets do. Keith Law of ESPN put out his top-100 list over the last two days(100-51 & 50-1) and only features two Tigers on it: one coming in at #67 and the other at #86. Those two players are Franklin Perez and Daz Cameron.
Though Law did have nice things to say about Cameron, you have to wonder about the snub of players like Manning, Burrows, and especially our first round draft pick Alex Faedo. But regardless here’s a breakdown of what he said,
Perez throws his fastball 92-96 with control (rather than command). He also has a hard 83-84 mph changeup with great action that mitigates the fact that you can see him turn it over that serves as his best off-speed pitch. His 80-83 curveball is fringy, as he tends to baby it rather than throw it full bore, but it could be a third above-average pitch for him if he learns to let it go.
Despite his youth, he doesn’t offer much physical projection, as he’s already well filled out, but his present velocity is more than enough to keep him a starter.
…he has No. 2-3 upside when he gets there.
Cameron went from Houston to Detroit in the August deadline deal for Justin Verlander that also included top-100 prospect, Franklin Perez, just two years after the Astros paid the son of longtime MLB outfielder Mike Cameron a $4 million bonus out of high school…
…He might be a “post-hype” guy now, having fallen off the radar a bit after his huge bonus and modest early returns in the minors, but he looks as if he’s growing into an even better player than projected when the Astros drafted him.
To be fair to Law, there’s really no science behind putting together a list of prospects, however, it is a lot of work. He had to go off of what he knows and sees. Maybe he evaluates talent differently than other outlets. Maybe he just forgot about Faedo. Who knows. At the end of the day, Tigers fans should be comfortable with what our future looks like. Not necessarily in the win column in 2018, but in the talent that has been accumulated and will be seen in Motown shortly.