Outfielder Danny Woodrow has earned himself a name in the Tigers’ farm system.
“Ballplayer,” vice president of player development Dave Littlefield said.
After three professional seasons, Woodrow has turned heads with his hard-nosed play. And in 2018, he showed there is much more to his game than a high hustle level.
Woodrow finished an impressive season with an outstanding showing in the Arizona Fall League, where he hit .371 in 62 at-bats. Most notably, his game-changing speed stood out, with 12 stolen bases.
A 12th-round pick out of Creighton in 2016, Woodrow hit .317/.371/.397 with three home runs and 23 stolen bases in 97 games during the season, mostly at Double-A Erie.
“Very simple approach,” Littlefield said. “Real good balance, solid bat speed, uses the whole field and hits line drives. Getting on base, bunting, stealing some bags and playing some good defense is the way he’s going to get to the big leagues.”
Listed at 5-foot-10, 160 pounds, the 24-year-old Woodrow was challenged by the Tigers to put on weight this offseason and report to spring training stronger.
“He’s going to have to get stronger to be a solid player in the major leagues,” Littlefield. “. . . He plays real hard and always gives you a great (run) time to first base. Everybody loves the kid. I want him to love the weight room.”
A strong spring could force the Tigers to start Woodrow at Triple-A Toledo, which would put him on the brink of the major leagues.
More likely, given the Tigers’ rebuilding situation, he will start at Erie before moving to Toledo as his performance dictates.
“A lot of scouts have asked me about him,” Littlefield. “He’s not really a name guy as our system goes. He’s more of an under-the-radar kind of guy, but we know we’ve got a good player in him.”
— The Tigers hired John Stockstill, P.J. Jones and Josh Wilson as major league scouts. Stockstill most recently served as an executive with the Orioles.
— Barring a rash of starting pitcher injuries in spring training, righthander Spencer Turnbull is slated to start the season at Triple-A Toledo. He made three starts for the Tigers in September.