Bonus Tigers Prospects: Nos. 21-25
We released our Tigers Top 20 Prospects list today. As I’ll do for each of the 10 Top 20s that I wrote, I’ll blog about five more prospects who were in the running to make the list:
21. Jose Alvarez, lhp. A minor league free-agent signing after the 2012 season, Alvarez made his big league debut and cracked Detroit’s postseason roster in 2013. A finesse lefty who could be a back-of-the-rotation starter, he relies on commanding his 88-92 four-seam fastball and mixing in a good changeup with sink.
22. Wilsen Palacios, rhp. Palacios has a promising 90-94 mph with life. He has been slow to refine his secondary pitches, the best of which is a so-so splitter, so he may be destined for the bullpen.
23. Jordan Lennerton, 1b. Though he’s older than most prospects at age 28, Lennerton did play in the 2013 Futures Game and won MVP honors in the Puerto Rican winter league this offseason. More of a batting average/on-base guy than a slugger in the mold of a James Loney or Lyle Overbay, he handles himself well around the bag.
24. Austin Schotts, of. The top hitter (third round) the Tigers drafted in 2012, Schotts struggled though a miserable .212/.278/.277 first full pro season. A well above-average runner with strength and defensive skills, he has Shane Victorino upside if he can make some adjustments at the plate.
25. Kyle Lobstein, lhp. Signed by the Rays for $1.5 million as a second-round pick in 2008, Lobstein came to the Tigers in the 2012 major league Rule 5 draft and stayed after Detroit traded catcher Curt Casali to Tampa Bay. A possible No. 5 starter, Lobstein misses enough bats by commanding and mixing four fringy pitches.
My favorite deep sleeper: Willy Adames, ss/3b. The double-play partner of Domingo Leyba (No. 8 on the Top 20) in the Rookie-level Dominican Summer League in 2013, Adames should make his U.S. debut this year. With a patient approach and average power potential and speed, he profiles best at third base.