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BA Grade: 65. Risk: High Tool Grades: Fastball: 60. Cutter: 55. Slider: 60. Splitter: 70. Control: 55. Track Record: Mize was Detroit’s first overall pick since 1997, when they selected Rice closer Matt Anderson. The Tigers drafted Mize No. 1 overall in 2018 and inked him for $7.5 million, which set a since-broken record for any player since the current draft format was implemented in 2012. Mize faced durability questions his junior season at Auburn after missing time with a flexor strain as a sophomore and pitching only sparingly that summer for USA Baseball’s Collegiate National Team. As an Auburn junior, Mize cemented himself as the best player in his draft class. He threw a career-high 114.2 innings but made just five starts in pro ball before being shut down. Mize dominated for 30.2 innings against Florida State League competition in 2019 and had a night to remember in his first game after a promotion to Double-A Erie. On April 29, he spun a no-hitter against Altoona, allowing one walk while striking out seven. Mize pitched well initially for the SeaWolves but gave the Tigers a scare on June 13, when he left his start against Reading with soreness in his right shoulder. He returned to Erie a month later but was nowhere near as effective. He allowed six runs in three of his final five starts before the Tigers shut him down for the season. Scouting Report: Mize’s fastball touches 97 mph but sits comfortably in the 93-94 range. It plays up because he commands it with ease to both sides of the strike zone. Mize also uses a harder cutter in the upper 80s, which helps neutralize lefthanded hitters, as well as a slider in the low-to-mid-80s. The slider improved in 2019 with better shape and consistency. His main secondary offering is a double-plus splitter that has late, hard downward tumble. Mize disguises his splitter well and it tunnels off the plane of his fastball, generating plenty of swings and misses. All of his pitches are firm but work to different parts of the strike zone effectively. Mize projects to have future plus control despite a herky-jerky delivery. He throws all of his pitches for strikes with above-average command and shows maturity on the mound. The Future: After dominating the Eastern League, Mize should continue his quick rise through the minors. It stands to reason that he will continue to log innings in the upper minors as he prepares for the rigors of a major league season. If all goes well, Mize may get his first taste of big league competition at the end of the 2020 season. His pitch mix, advanced control and double-plus splitter paint the picture of a future front-of-the-rotation around whom the Tigers can build.
BA Grade: 60. Risk: Medium Tool Grades: Fastball: 60. Curveball: 60. Changeup: 60. Control: 55. Track Record: Manning comes from athletic bloodlines as his father Rich played two seasons in the NBA. After climbing two levels and reaching Double-A to end his 2018 campaign, Manning took leaps forward in 2019. May was his best month, as the righthander allowed five earned runs across 31.1 innings pitched. The 21-year-old was named the Eastern League Pitcher of the Year thanks to his consistency and ability to throw all three of his pitches for strikes. His 148 strikeouts were second on the circuit. Scouting Report: Manning’s fastball plays up thanks to the extension he gets from his 6-foot-6 frame. He can ramp it up to 97 mph but sits more in the 92-95 range with life. Manning throws a high-spin curveball with sharp downer break that projects as plus. He will need to make sure it comes out of the same slot as his fastball as he matures. Manning’s third offering is a changeup that flashes plus thanks to sinking action. His tempo, athleticism and ability to attack the strike zone help him project to have future above-average control. The Future: Manning has to continue to hone his delivery while improving the ability to throw his changeup. His athleticism and competitive nature give him a mid-rotation ceiling.
BA Grade: 60. Risk: High Tool Grades: Fastball: 60. Curveball: 55. Slider: 60. Changeup: 55. Control: 50. Track Record: Skubal was excellent as a freshman at Seattle, where he posted a 7-4, 3.24 record. He had Tommy John surgery and took a redshirt in 2017 in what would have been his junior year but was still drafted by Arizona in the 29th round that June. A year later, the Tigers took a flier on him in the ninth round. His control numbers suffered but quickly returned once he moved into pro ball. The lefthander reached Double-A in 2019 and tallied 17.43 strikeouts per nine innings over 15 starts with Erie and finished with 179 strikeouts overall. That mark—as well as his 13.13 strikeouts per nine innings—was good for the third-best in the minors. Scouting Report: Skubal’s fastball sits at 94-95 mph and tops at 97 mph. He hits both sides of the plate and works it inside on hitters. He throws two different breaking pitches and lands them both in the strike zone. His curveball is in the upper 70s and flashes above-average but tends to get on the same plane as his slider. Skubal uses his potentially plus slider to work down and in on righthanders. The lefthander’s changeup has plus movement but needs more consistency. The Future: Skubal’s frontline stuff and pitchability should help him reach the ceiling of a No. 2 starter in the big leagues.
BA Grade: 60. Risk: Very High Tool Grades: Hit: 60. Power: 60. Run: 55. Fielding: 55. Arm: 55. Track Record: Greene finished his senior season at Hagerty HS with a .420 average and was a BA first-team High School All-American. Greene was the best prep hitter in the draft class and was taken by Detroit with the fifth overall pick. He signed for $6,180,700 then quickly zoomed to low Class A West Michigan after just 33 games in the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League and short-season Connecticut. He earned a spot as the No. 2 prospect in the New York-Penn League, behind only No. 1 overall pick Adley Rutschman. Scouting Report: Greene features a smooth, strong lefthanded swing that gets on plane quickly and stays there throughout his swing. He shows good barrel control for a prep draftee and has displayed the ability to stay within the strike zone. Greene shows plus raw power that should translate into above-average in game power as he gets more at-bats and continues to gain strength. While he has played center field during his brief time in the minors, executives believe he profiles best in right field. His speed is above-average and his arm is plus, but he lacks acceleration and the closing ability necessary to track down balls as a center fielder. The Future: Even though his hit tool is advanced, Greene is still raw and far away from the big leagues. His overall skill set profiles best as a first-division regular in right field.
BA Grade: 55. Risk: High Tool Grades: Hit: 60. Power: 55. Run: 40. Fielding: 45. Arm: 50. c Track Record: Paredes’ bat is what made him a valuable pickup for Detroit when they acquired him in July of 2017 from the Cubs in a deal for catcher Alex Avila and lefthander Justin Wilson. After reaching Double-A as a 19-year old during the 2018 season, Paredes returned in 2019 and posted a career-high in homers (13) and hits (135) as one of the second youngest player in the league. He didn’t chase much at all zone and drew nearly as many walks (57) as he struck out (60). Scouting Report: Natural bat-to-ball skills and elite plate discipline are the highlights of Paredes’ profile. He hits for some power and projects to be above-average in that department. He will have to move from shortstop to third base, where his hands will play, although executives wonder if his maxed out frame means he will ultimately end up at first base. Paredes has arm strength but needs to work on throwing mechanics and consistency of his throws. At best, his range projects as fringe-average. While he won’t clog up the bases, he is a below-average runner. The Future: Paredes’ ability to mash should get him to the big leagues. With developing power, it’s conceivable that he will get the chance to be an everyday regular even with fringe-average defense.
BA Grade: 50. Risk: High Tool Grades: Fastball: 55. Slider: 55. Changeup: 45. Control: 55. Track Record: Faedo won the Most Outstanding Player honors during Florida’s run to the 2017 College World Series win. The righthander endured surgeries on both knees before his junior season but bounced back and showed the stuff necessary to be selected 18th overall by Detroit. Questions arose when Faedo didn’t show the fastball velocity he did as an amateur during his first full season as a pro. The velo returned in 2019, and his performance responded in kind. His strikeouts per nine innings jumped from 8.85 in 2018 with Double-A Erie to 10.46 in 2019 at the same level. Faedo ranked as the Eastern League’s No. 12 prospect. Scouting Report: Faedo’s fastball tops out in the mid-90s but usually averages around 92 mph. Faedo’s main secondary is his slider, which was one of the best in his draft class and generated swings and misses thanks to improved depth. His feel to throw it and miss bats lends it to project as an above-average pitch. Faedo’s seldom-used changeup has plenty of natural run, but he needs to command the pitch better for it to projects as better than fringe-average. Faedo also earns praise for Tigers executives for his aggressive nature on the mound. The Future: His arsenal is effective but doesn’t feature a wipeout pitch. His competitiveness and above-average control create a profile of a back-end starter.
BA Grade: 50. Risk: High Tool Grades: Hit: 45. Power: 55. Run: 50. Fielding: 50. Arm: 50 Track Record: The son of former all-star outfielder Mike Cameron was flipped at the 2017 deadline as part of the package sent to Houston to acquire ace Justin Verlander for their postseason run. Cameron hit a career-high 14 home runs in 2017 but saw his power nearly cut in half the following season when he hit eight homers between three levels. While his power returned in 2019 with 13 home runs, the outfielder posted a sub-.200 average in the months of April, July and August. Scouting Report: Cameron receives high praise from Tigers’ personnel for the way he handles himself both on and off the field. He is athletic and has bat speed, but his hit tool projects as future average at best. Cameron doesn’t make consistent contact, but his raw power is average and should translate into fringe-average game power if he is able to make some adjustments. His feel for the game is plus, and helps his average defensive tools play up. His average arm is suitable for center field or a corner. Cameron isn’t a burner on the bases but runs well underway in the outfield. The Future: Cameron’s contact woes are alarming and didn’t get any better at Triple-A this season. His maturity and near-average tools across the board have the future of a second-division regular if his bat comes around at all.
BA Grade: 55. Risk: Extreme Tool Grades: Fastball: 55. Curveball: 55. Slider: 60. Changeup: 60. Control: 50. Track Record: Perez’s arm strength helped facilitate a return to the mound after he trained temporarily as a third baseman at Carlos Guillen’s academy in Venezuela as an amateur. The No. 14 international ranked prospect in 2014 inked for $1 million bonus with the Astros before being flipped to Detroit as part of the package for righthander Justin Verlander in 2017. A cluster of injuries has slowed down Perez, who has made nine starts in his last two seasons combined. A knee injury in 2017 was followed by a lat strain and shoulder woes in 2018, and the shoulder woes returned in 2019 and derailed much of his season Scouting Report: When healthy, Perez’s stuff offers significant upside. His fastball has a high spin rate, tops out in the mid-90s and projects as plus. He shows particularly good feel for a low-to-mid 80s changeup with excellent armside run. The pitch misses plenty of bats with hard, late sinking action. Perez’s curveball flashes plus with good depth down in the strike zone. As he’s gotten comfortable, his slider has taken positive steps. The Future: Perez needs a healthy 2020 to get back on track. His age, plus control and four-pitch mix point toward a future as a mid-rotation arm if he can stay healthy.
BA Grade: 45. Risk: Medium Tool Grades: Hit: 50. Power: 45. Run: 50. Fielding: 50. Arm: 50. Track Record: Castro was born in Puerto Rico but raised in the Dominican Republic and became the Indians’ top non-Cuban international signee in 2013 when he signed for $825,000. Detroit acquired Castro in exchange for Leonys Martin and Kyle Dowdy at the 2018 trade deadline. He has been one of the youngest players at every level he’s reached. Castro made it to the big leagues in August and started 28 games at shortstop for the Tigers. Scouting Report: Castro features good bat-to-ball skills from both sides of the plate. His contact has helped him to maintain a similar OPS from both sides of the plate in the minors, but he has more natural power from the left side. His raw power is a tick above-average but won’t translate to more than fringe-average power. He has the necessary range, speed and hands to stick at shortstop. Even with average tools, he showed inconsistency in his brief callup, botching routine plays yet making difficult ones look easy. He’s an average runner. The Future: His time in the big leagues wasn’t pretty, but his ability to get on base and athletic actions could eventually help him reach his ceiling of a second-division regular or a utility option.
BA Grade: 45. Risk: Medium Tool Grades: Hit: 40. Power: 55. Run: 30. Fielding: 60. Arm: 70. Track Record: Rogers was drafted by the Astros in 2016 and sent to Detroit as part of the package for Justin Verlander. While he has shown power, the defense-first backstop hasn’t done much with the bat as a pro. His maturity behind home plate and ability to connect with his pitchers helped him earn his first big league callup on July 30. Scouting Report: Rogers holds Tulane’s record for caught-stealing percentage (56.8) and nabbed just under 50 percent of potential basestealers in the International League. His arm strength is plus but gets amplified by excellent footwork and transfer ability. Rogers receives praise for his work ethic and the way he studies the game. Utilizing a pronounced leg kick, Rogers’ hit tool is considered well below-average. He tends to swing uphill and gets off plane too quickly to make consistent contact. When he does connect, Rogers hits balls hard. His raw power is plus and should allow him to show average power in games. As with plenty of other catchers, Rogers has below-average speed but it doesn’t hinder his athletic ability behind the dish. The Future: If he can adjust to big league pitching, he could be a 20-homer backstop who brings elite defensive skills to the position. If not, his ceiling is that of a backup catcher.
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