Gage Workman Has No Plans To Slow Down
When the Arizona State baseball program was told that the Pacific-12 Conference season had been postponed, the mentality to stay prepared for when baseball returned quickly set in.
When news of the season’s official cancellation soon followed, the mentality changed to preparation for the 2020 draft. For Gage Workman, the ability to adapt to the changing atmosphere wasn’t as difficult as some may have expected.
“You always look forward to the draft, and I was definitely hoping I went this year," the 20-year-old third baseman said. "So I was ready for, if I did get drafted, to be ready to go play somewhere."
Prior to coronavirus restrictions being elevated, fields at the ASU campus were made available to small groups of players for short periods of time for socially-distanced training.
“When it got bigger and they shut down everything for good, that's when I had to resort to the home gyms, going to the park, and doing our own workouts,” Workman said.
“I'm pretty fortunate, because my dad played baseball, so he's still able to throw me batting practice and hit me ground balls so I could stay sharp that way, but I definitely had to get a little bit more creative with how we got our exercises in.”
Following the draft, the Tigers’ fourth-round pick has leaned on Sun Devils teammate, close friend and No. 1 overall pick Spencer Torkelson for reconnaissance from Detroit’s 60-man player pool.
“He said, 'Dude, they don’t throw any cookies,' " Workman laughed. " 'There's not too many pitches you're going to see floating down the middle.' So, upping your focus level and really hunting pitches, looking at pitches, hunting in zones of what you're trying to hit is important.”
While the 6-foot-3, 180-pound Workman has yet to see true in-game action as a minor leaguer, Workman has no plans to slow down while he waits.
“I definitely think there are ways to improve now,” Workman said. “When they say, 'Go play,' I'll be ready to go play.”
— The Tigers gave a preview of what their rotation could look like over the next several years with the major league debuts of 2018 No. 1 overall pick Casey Mize and ninth-round lefty Tarik Skubal. Over 4.1 innings, Mize allowed three runs while fanning seven without a walk. Skubal worked a pair of frames, allowing four runs, a walk and striking out one.
— Arguably the most developed trade acquisition from the Tigers' house cleaning in 2017, Isaac Paredes was presented with his major league debut as well. The former shortstop has earned more looks at third base of late, solidifying his likely future home.