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Gage Workman Shows Off At Instructs



Last fall at instructional league, Tigers farm director Kenny Graham faced the challenge of getting to know a new draft class in the midst of the pandemic.

“It was just such a different year, that a big part of it was seeing where guys were at physically,” Graham said.

“There were just so many restrictions in certain areas that the priority was to see where guys were and keep them healthy. We just wanted to get them accustomed to professional baseball as much as we could.”

Thanks to a long-time friendship with Arizona State head coach Tracy Smith, Graham knew what to expect from former Sun Devils third baseman Gage Workman, whom the Tigers drafted in the fourth round.

“I went to Indiana University, and Tracy Smith coached there, so we have some connections through the college ranks,” said Graham, who used Smith's feedback as well as the Tigers scouting department's info to know what to expect from Workman.

“His body and tools and power and athleticism we had heard about, but it was good to see it in instructional league and have some of that backed up and with our own eyes,” Graham said.

Workman, as expected, found ways to grab attention, all while going about his business in his signature soft-spoken way. For Graham, Workman’s production on the field was impossible to ignore. He spent much of his time at instructs playing shortstop.

“It's two things,” Graham said. “One is the athleticism, his ability to make the body control plays, and his awareness. He made some plays at shortstop and after the fact, it's like, 'Did he just do that? Like, whoa.' ”

At the plate, Workman showed more of the same.

“Switch-hitters usually have one stronger side," Graham said, "and Gage, his numbers look a little bit better from the left side, but he did some really impressive things from the right side too.

"He had a double on the left-field line from the right side. And it's just, again, it's the athleticism and body control."

TIGER TALES

— Slick-fielding shortstop Sergio Alcantara appeared in 23 games for Licey of the Dominican League, hitting .257/.346/.400 with two home runs. The Tigers designated him for assignment when they signed veteran catcher Wilson Ramos.

— The Tigers sent outfielders Jacob Robson and Cam Gibson to the Australian Winter League, assigning both to the Sydney Blue Sox. Gibson spent 2019 at Double-A Erie, while Robson played a level higher at Triple-A Toledo.

Cade Cavalli Tomdipace

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