- Full name Christopher James Robinson
- Born 05/12/1984 in London, ON, Canada
- Profile Ht.: 6'0" / Wt.: 220 / Bats: R / Throws: R
- School Illinois
- Debut 09/04/2013
Drafted in the 3rd round (90th overall) by the Detroit Tigers in 2005.
View Draft ReportThe top all-around catcher in the Cape Cod League last summer, Robinson was slowed this spring when he was hit on the hand by a pitch. The injury knocked him out for two weeks and affected him at the plate afterward, but he hit the ball with authority down the stretch. He doesn't possess overwhelming tools as a hitter, but his approach and plate discipline should allow him to hit for a decent average with fringe average power. He drives the ball well to the opposite field, and may become more dangerous if he pulls the ball more often. His plus arm is his best tool, and he was leading Big 10 Conference catchers in catching basestealers (43 percent) and pickoffs (seven). His receiving skills are average, and he runs fine for a catcher. Despite his solid package of tools, some scouts think his makeup stands out more than anything. His leadership helped Illinois win its first Big 10 regular-season title since 1998. A mainstay on Canadian national teams, Robinson will benefit from a new visa law that should allow him to begin his pro career immediately. Foreign citizens drafted in 2004 had to wait until this year to get a work visa.
Organization Prospect Rankings
Just getting rid of Neifi Perez last August would have helped the Cubs, because his inability to get on base harmed their offense for two years. But they also received Robinson, who adds to their stable of decent if not overwhelming catching prospects. A third-round pick in 2005 after leading Illinois to the Big Ten Conference regular-season title, he signed for $422,000. Robinson has a line-drive approach and gap power, and he may produce just enough offense to cut it as a regular in the big leagues. He won't drive many balls out of the park, so he'd be better off focusing on getting on base by showing more patience. He does a good job behind the plate, with plus arm strength (belied by his 26 percent success rate throwing out basestealers last year) and average receiving skills. A strong leader, he runs a pitching staff well. Like most catchers, he's a below-average runner. Robinson is ready for Double-A but may have to share time behind the plate in Tennessee with Jake Fox expected to return to that level.
Detroit hasn't needed great catching depth recently after developing defensive stalwart Brandon Inge and signing all-star Ivan Rodriguez as a free agent. After Rodriguez' horrid 2005 season and Inge's improvement offensively after a move to third base, the Tigers have started to think harder about their future behind the plate. To that end, they used their second pick in the 2005 draft, a third-round selection, to pick Robinson. A native of Canada who played on several junior national teams, Robinson led Illinois to the 2005 Big Ten Conference regular-season title, its first since 1998, before signing for $422,000. His pro career get off to a horrible 2-for-34 start before a four-hit game July 11, after which he batted .299. He has a solid approach and projects as a fringe-average hitter who handles the bat well, with the ability to make consistent contact and hit-and-run. Defensively, he has a plus arm and average receiving skills. His leadership ability also earns praise from scouts. Robinson could earn a job in high Class A this year considering the organization's lack of depth at catcher.
Best Tools List
- Rated Best Defensive Catcher in the Detroit Tigers in 2006