Globe iconLogin iconRecap iconSearch iconTickets icon
The Official Site of the Detroit Tigers
news

Tigers Sox Pipeline

Burrows honing offspeed pitches at Erie

MLB.com

ERIE, Pa. -- Beau Burrows has been known to find another gear with his fastball when he gets into a tight spot. On this particular July afternoon, he downshifted.

"[Burrows] could go out there and throw fastballs and have success. I do believe that," Double-A manager Andrew Graham said. "And he did it when I had him last year in Lakeland. But he's got to develop his offspeed pitches."

ERIE, Pa. -- Beau Burrows has been known to find another gear with his fastball when he gets into a tight spot. On this particular July afternoon, he downshifted.

"[Burrows] could go out there and throw fastballs and have success. I do believe that," Double-A manager Andrew Graham said. "And he did it when I had him last year in Lakeland. But he's got to develop his offspeed pitches."

Burrows went to the breaking ball in a hitters' count, a 2-1 pitch after back-to-back one-out walks. He hadn't allowed a hit at that point, but his fastball was sailing out of the strike zone, and hitters weren't chasing. A breaking ball in a fastball situation induced Pirates prospect Will Craig into a ground ball to shortstop and an inning-ending double play.

This is when Burrows looks like the most advanced of the top starting pitching prospects the Tigers have acquired. In this case, the result was seven innings and nine strikeouts. His lone run came on a sixth-inning fastball sent to the roof of the hockey arena beyond left field at UPMC Park, and he struck out the side from there, fanning three Top 30 Pirates prospects. Two fanned on fastballs, with a curveball at the knees for a called third strike in between.

Burrows struggled in his next two starts despite notching 11 strikeouts over eight innings. That has been the story of his first full season of Double-A ball. But when he has all of his pitches working, he can be dominant.

"It's close. It's coming," Burrows said. "It's going to be exciting whenever it all comes together."

The Tigers have accumulated so much pitching talent that Burrows is easy to overlook. Though he's on MLB Pipeline's Top 100 Prospects list, he's the fifth-ranked starting pitching prospect in the Tigers' system. The Tigers made him the 22nd overall pick in the 2015 Draft out of high school, so he didn't have the college stardom of Alex Faedo and Casey Mize, Detroit's two most recent top picks. Nor is Burrows as physically imposing as Franklin Perez, the top prospect from last summer's Justin Verlander trade, and 2016 top pick Matt Manning.

But slowly, steadily, Burrows is climbing the Tigers' farm system with a four-pitch arsenal, a competitive mean streak and a pitching acumen that belies his age.

"For a 21-year-old kid, he's very mature, he really is," said Graham, who has managed Burrows for much of the last three seasons at three different levels. "And very coachable. He's not afraid to listen to the coaches and to work on stuff, and that's a big thing to have. You have some players out there who think they're having success. They don't want to try different things, and then they get to the big leagues and they don't stay. We're here to develop him, so when he does get the call up, then hopefully he stays and has a good career."

For that reason, Graham and pitching coach Willie Blair have hammered home the point of using his curveball and slider. Burrows has thrown both for most of his pro career, which has allowed him to avoid some of the growing pains other young pitchers have when trying to develop both at the same time.

"I love his curveball," Graham said. "At times, he uses it more for a get-me-over. I think if he can bounce that ball on the plate, he's going to have a lot of swings-and-misses. It's coming out of the same slot as his elevated fastball, so it's a weapon for him. He likes his slider, because he sees more late action on it, and I can understand that. But if he can get them both working, and command both of them to go with that fastball that's got the late life, he's going to have success."

Former Tigers pitcher Willie Blair has seen those stretches since Burrows reached Erie last summer.

"When he throws his good [breaking balls], they are very good," Blair said. "The problem is he's just been so inconsistent with it. He knows what it feels like when he throws them right."

Burrows also has confidence that he can do it. If he can command his fastball, which tops out in the mid-90s, he believes he can make them work.

"They're two completely different pitches, so when I throw them right, they're way different," Burrows said. "Maybe sometimes they mesh together a little bit, but when I really focus on throwing them and I do the right things, then they're good, different pitches."

Burrows will get every opportunity to hone that consistency. Though he has spent the equivalent of a full year at Double-A, there's no rush to promote him, especially now that Perez has been shut down to rest his arm instead of joining Erie for the stretch run.

Even so, there's a very good chance Burrows becomes the first of the Tigers' pitching prospects to reach Detroit. It might not be until late next season, but it's when rather than if.

"I don't worry about that stuff," Burrows said. "I mean, when I'm ready, I'll be able to go up there and compete, but right now I'm just getting better every day and learning. Whatever they decide, they decide."

Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook.

Detroit Tigers

Martin dealt to Cleveland for shortstop prospect

Castro, a switch-hitter, was ranked No. 8 in Indians system
MLB.com

DETROIT -- The Tigers went into Tuesday's non-waiver Trade Deadline looking to make some moves and accumulate prospects. They came away with one, sending center fielder Leonys Martin and Double-A pitching prospect Kyle Dowdy to Cleveland for shortstop prospect Willi Castro.

They had hopes for another deal as the day wore on, but couldn't come close to a trade for pitcher Mike Fiers.

View Full Game Coverage

DETROIT -- The Tigers went into Tuesday's non-waiver Trade Deadline looking to make some moves and accumulate prospects. They came away with one, sending center fielder Leonys Martin and Double-A pitching prospect Kyle Dowdy to Cleveland for shortstop prospect Willi Castro.

They had hopes for another deal as the day wore on, but couldn't come close to a trade for pitcher Mike Fiers.

View Full Game Coverage

With more sellers than buyers on the market, Detroit general manager Al Avila wasn't going to force a trade just for the sake of trading.

"In our situation, we're not in a hurry to make a bad deal," he said.

Swapping Martin and a Minor League pitcher for a shortstop prospect, Avila said, was a good deal that took three days of talks and late-night work Monday to put together. It comes eight years after the last Tigers-Indians trade, which sent shortstop Jhonny Peralta to Detroit.

Castro is the fifth middle-infield prospect the Tigers have acquired in trades since last summer, and he'll join two others in Double-A Erie. The 21-year-old switch-hitter ranked No. 8 on MLB Pipeline's list of Indians prospects. His .245 average and .653 OPS at Double-A Akron this season are both down from stronger numbers at Class A Advanced Lynchburg last season.

"We tried to acquire him last year," Avila said. "We feel that he has a chance to be a good, everyday shortstop. We feel that he's going to hit. We feel that he's going to be a good infielder. So it adds to the mix of the good young prospects that we have right now."

Video: Top Prospects: Willi Castro, SS, Indians

Castro enters the Tigers' system ranked 10th among their prospects by MLB Pipeline, highest among infielders. Erie already has shortstop/second base prospect Isaac Paredes, ranked 12th after his trade from the Cubs system last summer, and Sergio Alcantara, ranked 19th following his arrival from the Diamondbacks system in last summer's J.D. Martinez trade.

Castro, Paredes and Alcantara will rotate infield positions with Erie, according to Avila. One will play shortstop on a given night, while the other two play second and third base.

While Detroit benefited this season from a rejuvenated Martin, a trade was always the likely outcome to his Detroit tenure. Martin was one of several signings the Tigers made last offseason with players looking to rebound and recover value, at which point they could be marketed to other teams for prospects around the Trade Deadline and help the Tigers bolster their farm system.

"We went out and signed him this winter for two purposes," Avila said. "We loved his defense and we wanted a good defensive center fielder. We felt there was a good chance for him to have a comeback year offensively. And we liked his energy and his enthusiasm. He really gave us a good lift.

"At the same time, we also knew that in our situation, come July 31, if he had a decent first part of the season, there was a chance we may be able to move him for a prospect. And that's exactly how it worked out. So, today's a good day for the Detroit Tigers."

After struggling during the 2017 season between the Mariners and Cubs, Martin signed a one-year deal for $1.75 million to join Detroit, where an everyday role and an expansive outfield helped him experience a bounce-back season at age 30 despite a nagging hamstring issue that landed him on the disabled list at the start of July.

Video: CLE@DET: Martin makes a nice running catch in the gap

Martin batted .251 (76-for-303) with 15 doubles, three triples, nine home runs and 45 runs scored. His .731 OPS is on track to be the best of his career, while his .321 on-base percentage is his best since 2014.

Martin has struggled at the plate since his return from the DL after the All-Star break, going 5-for-27 with eight strikeouts and no stolen-base attempts. However, his play in center field made him a commodity for an Indians team seeking help at the position following Bradley Zimmer's season-ending injury.

"We had a couple other inquiries on Martin. Cleveland was the most aggressive," Avila said. "They had probably the biggest need at this point, and so we really got more into [talks] last night."

The 25-year-old Dowdy was a 12th-round pick by the Tigers in the 2015 Draft. He has split this season between Triple-A Toledo and Double-A Erie, combining for an 8-8 record with a 4.74 ERA while striking out 92 batters in 95 innings.

Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook.

Detroit Tigers, Willi Castro

Pitching leads midseason prospect rankings

Injury updates: Cabrera, Fulmer, Carpenter, Barbato
MLB.com

DETROIT -- The Tigers' rebuild is centered around starting pitching. If that wasn't already apparent, the updated MLB Pipeline rankings released Thursday bring the point home, with top overall Draft pick Casey Mize joining Franklin Perez, Matt Manning, Alex Faedo and Beau Burrows at the top of the Tigers' list.

Not only are Detroit's top five prospects starting pitchers, all five are also in MLB Pipeline's top 100 list of prospects across baseball. It marks the first time the Tigers have had five prospects at any position among the top 100 overall on MLB Pipeline's list.

View Full Game Coverage

DETROIT -- The Tigers' rebuild is centered around starting pitching. If that wasn't already apparent, the updated MLB Pipeline rankings released Thursday bring the point home, with top overall Draft pick Casey Mize joining Franklin Perez, Matt Manning, Alex Faedo and Beau Burrows at the top of the Tigers' list.

Not only are Detroit's top five prospects starting pitchers, all five are also in MLB Pipeline's top 100 list of prospects across baseball. It marks the first time the Tigers have had five prospects at any position among the top 100 overall on MLB Pipeline's list.

View Full Game Coverage

Mize, who made his pro debut on Thursday with two hitless innings and four strikeouts in the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League, takes over the top spot on the Tigers' list. He supplanted Perez, who missed the first 2 1/2 months of the season with a lat strain sustained in Spring Training. Mize also ranks seventh on MLB Pipeline's rankings of baseball's top 10 right-handed pitching prospects.

Mize is expected to pitch about 20 innings this summer as an introduction to pro ball after throwing a full college season for Auburn, taking those Tigers to the NCAA Super Regionals. He'll ramp up his workload next spring in his first full pro season.

The glut of starting pitching atop the Tigers' rankings is followed by a trio of outfielders, led by Christin Stewart, who rose from 10th in the preseason rankings to sixth following a hot start for Triple-A Toledo. Second-round Draft pick Parker Meadows makes his debut in the rankings at seventh. Daz Cameron, part of the Justin Verlander trade package along with Perez and Jake Rogers, jumps a spot to eighth following a midseason hitting tear at Double-A Erie.

Rogers fell from fifth to 10th as he tries to adjust to Double-A pitching. Shortstop Isaac Paredes fell four spots to 11th despite 12 homers in 84 games at Class A Advanced Lakeland.

Other 2018 Draft picks making their debut on the list are third-round pick Kody Clemens, ranked 14th after opening his pro career at second base at Class A West Michigan, and outfielder Kingston Liniak, the Tigers' fourth-round pick. Though outfielder Brock Deatherage made an early impression in the Gulf Coast League and West Michigan, he did not crack Detroit's top 30.

The highest riser was outfielder Jacob Robson, whose Eastern League All-Star campaign at Erie and midseason promotion to Toledo jumped him from 27th to 15th.

The rankings could get another adjustment or two in the coming weeks if the Tigers add prospects at Tuesday's Trade Deadline and beyond. That said, the top end of the rankings isn't likely to change barring a major surprise of a deal.

Quick hits

• Right-hander Michael Fulmer, who went on the 10-day DL a week ago with a left oblique strain, has resumed physical activity, though he's not close to a return.

"He feels great," manager Ron Gardenhire said. "He's been out doing a lot of running. We're getting close to that 10-day period where maybe he'll start playing some light catch, and see where he's at."

• The Tigers activated left-hander Ryan Carpenter and right-hander Johnny Barbato from the 10-day DL and assigned both of them to Triple-A Toledo. Carpenter, out since June 1 with a right oblique strain, made three rehab starts, but he will stay in Toledo to serve as depth in case of trades. Barbato went on the DL with rotator cuff tendinitis on June 23.

Miguel Cabrera continues to rehab in Ann Arbor and in South Florida following season-ending surgery to repair a ruptured left biceps tendon. He could visit the Tigers this weekend ahead of his charity fundraiser event next week.

Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook.

Detroit Tigers

Funkhouser felled by Toledo sidewalk; out for '18

Tigers pitching prospect to have surgery on fractured right foot
MLB.com

KANSAS CITY -- The Tigers' rebuilding effort has already had a fair number of twists and turns. Add the sidewalks of downtown Toledo to the list, claiming pitching prospect Kyle Funkhouser with a broken bone in his right foot.

Funkhouser, Detroit's seventh-ranked prospect according to MLB Pipeline, fractured the fifth metatarsal in his foot after turning his ankle on an uneven sidewalk while walking home from a game last week, the team announced. The fracture will require surgery to repair, ending his 2018 season.

View Full Game Coverage

KANSAS CITY -- The Tigers' rebuilding effort has already had a fair number of twists and turns. Add the sidewalks of downtown Toledo to the list, claiming pitching prospect Kyle Funkhouser with a broken bone in his right foot.

Funkhouser, Detroit's seventh-ranked prospect according to MLB Pipeline, fractured the fifth metatarsal in his foot after turning his ankle on an uneven sidewalk while walking home from a game last week, the team announced. The fracture will require surgery to repair, ending his 2018 season.

View Full Game Coverage

Funkhouser is expected to make a full recovery in time for next Spring Training, according to the team.

The 24-year-old right-hander, a Dodgers first-round pick in 2015 who returned to Louisville for his senior season and fell to the Tigers with their fourth-round selection two years ago, had just arrived at Triple-A Toledo, having been promoted last week. Funkhouser went 4-5 with a 3.74 ERA at Double-A Erie but dominated Eastern League hitters in June to earn Detroit's Minor League Pitcher of the Month honors. He struck out 89 batters in as many innings for the season.

Funkhouser gave up six runs on hits over 8 2/3 innings in two starts for the Mud Hens, both losses, walking 10 and striking out seven. His midseason promotion put him in line to potentially be the first of the Tigers' pitching prospects to get the call to Detroit next season, though his latest injury could slow the timetable a bit.

Whether Funkhouser's injury causes a ripple effect of moves in the Tigers' system remains to be seen. Fellow starter Beau Burrows, Detroit's fourth-ranked prospect according to MLB Pipeline, has had an up-and-down season at Erie, but it has been speculated that he's in line for a potential promotion with close to a full year at the Double-A level. Top Tigers prospect Franklin Perez is expected to join Erie's rotation at some point, having made three starts for Class A Advanced Lakeland after a lat strain cost him three months.

The Mud Hens, meanwhile, are in the thick of the International League West race for their first division title since 2007 and their first winning season since '09.

Jones wins Heart and Hustle Award
Outfielder JaCoby Jones was named the Tigers' winner of the Heart and Hustle Award, as voted on by former players through the MLB Players Alumni Association. The award honors players who demonstrate a passion for the game and best embody its values, spirit and traditions.

"An energetic player, JaCoby inspires his teammates daily," MLBPAA chief executive officer Dan Foster said in a statement. "He always has a great attitude and plays hard in every game."

Jones was a player without a role for Detroit when Spring Training began, but Tigers manager Ron Gardenhire took a chance by carrying him on the Opening Day roster, convincing management he could find the playing time to allow the 26-year-old to continue developing. Jones immediately made an impact with his speed on the basepaths and in the field, eventually carving out an everyday role in the outfield.

Jones entered Tuesday batting .207 (63-for-304) with 18 doubles, four triples, seven home runs, 22 RBIs, eight stolen bases and a .625 OPS. His 1.5 Wins Above Replacement, according to Baseball-Reference, ranks third among Tigers position players behind Nicholas Castellanos (1.9) and Leonys Martin (1.7).

The MLBPAA will vote on a national winner from the 30 team honorees, to be announced in November.

Quick hits
• Tigers catcher James McCann, who blocked nine pitches in the dirt on Monday night, according to Statcast™, and "took a beating" according to Gardenhire, felt surprisingly good on Tuesday and was back in the lineup. John Hicks, whom Gardenhire said has been dealing with a sore groin, will catch Wednesday's series finale with Matthew Boyd on the mound.

• The Tigers and Royals played on Tuesday on the 16th anniversary of their 1-hour, 41-minute game at Comerica Park in 2002. Jose Lima tossed seven scoreless innings, allowing two hits on just 78 pitches for Detroit that night in a 3-0 shutout. Paul Byrd took the loss, but he pitched eight quality innings on just 83 pitches. It was the fastest nine-inning Major League game since 1984 until the Mariners and White Sox beat it by two minutes on April 16, 2005.

Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook.

Detroit Tigers

Cameron becoming gem of Verlander deal

Athletic outfielder could serve as model for Tigers entering '18 Deadline
MLB.com

ERIE, Pa. -- Daz Cameron was 22 months old when the White Sox traded his father to the Reds after the 1998 season. Mike Cameron was a talented young center fielder, just two full seasons into his big league career, but the White Sox liked a young slugger in Cincinnati's system named Paul Konerko.

Daz was coming off his third birthday when his dad was traded again to Seattle. The elder Cameron was a cog in a Reds team that came within a tiebreaker of a playoff berth, but he wasn't hometown hero Ken Griffey Jr.

ERIE, Pa. -- Daz Cameron was 22 months old when the White Sox traded his father to the Reds after the 1998 season. Mike Cameron was a talented young center fielder, just two full seasons into his big league career, but the White Sox liked a young slugger in Cincinnati's system named Paul Konerko.

Daz was coming off his third birthday when his dad was traded again to Seattle. The elder Cameron was a cog in a Reds team that came within a tiebreaker of a playoff berth, but he wasn't hometown hero Ken Griffey Jr.

So when the Astros traded their former first-round pick, Daz Cameron, to the Tigers last August to add Justin Verlander, the young outfielder got a bit of advice from his dad.

"He told me, 'It's going to be kind of like you just got drafted, just meeting the guys and getting to know everybody,'" Cameron said. "But he said, 'Once you step in between the lines, it's just the game, and you go about your business.'"

Eleven months later, business is going well. And as the Tigers near another July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline looking to continue restocking their farm system, the 21-year-old outfielder is the kind of athletic offensive prospect the Tigers would love more of.

Cameron ranks 10th -- fourth among position players -- on MLB Pipeline's list of top Tigers prospects. He will likely move up the list when it's updated later this summer.

"He's going to be a special player to watch, exciting for Detroit Tigers fans," Double-A Erie SeaWovles manager Andrew Graham said.

Cameron has shown flashes of power, an abundance of speed and an improved defense in his first full season -- split between Class A Advanced Lakeland and Erie -- in the Tigers' system, and plenty of all those skill in a month with the SeaWolves. Now, he's showing the ability to adjust.

"For me, it's just focusing in on what I can do. That's been the key," Cameron said. "I have to be able to hit my pitch when it's there and let my athleticism take over. I'm not a guy that's going to pull the ball a lot. I'm going to spray it all over the field. My goal is to go out there and have fun and not worry about scouting reports."

Eastern League scouting reports took time to catch up with Cameron, who hit line drives all over UPMC Park in Erie for two weeks. It's not just that he went 18-for-44 (.409) over his first 11 Double-A games, but that seven of those hits went for extra bases, including two homers and two triples. He scored 10 runs, drove in 10, walked six times and stole four bases without being caught. Half the balls he put in play went for hits.

Video: DET@ATL: Cameron rips RBI ground-rule double

Then, of course, came the bounce-back, a 3-for-30 skid with 11 strikeouts and a .158 BABIP. He hit two more triples, but he tried to do something similar each time up.

"Instead of being locked in, he was trying to do too much," Graham said. "Next thing you know, the other team is saying, 'OK, don't throw anything over the dish right here. Let's go outside and see if he chases.' And he bit on a couple.

"He had a situation where we had runners in scoring position and a base open. They threw him three curveballs. He swung at three balls. And you talk to him and say, 'Hey, would you throw a strike right there with a base open and you're the hottest hitter in the league right now?' He's like, 'No.' And I said, 'Well, there you go.' But the maturity he has, he learned from that. And the next time that happened, he just sat there and got into a hitter's count, and then grinded out the at-bat."

This is where Cameron is now -- not tearing up the league, not slumping, but learning. He posted three two-hit games last weekend against Altoona, but in different fashions. He singled twice last Saturday, but with runners at the corners in the ninth inning with a two-run deficit, he struck out on three pitches, chasing an 0-2 offering.

The next day, Cameron took a first-pitch ball in the first inning with a runner on first, then sent a fastball to the top of the hockey arena that towers over left field. An inning later, he lined an RBI single into the other gap.

"Great approaches," Graham said. "He's still, at times, swinging at the ball in the dirt, which he didn't do earlier. … I can't say he's struggling; he's still doing an unbelievable job. But compared to what we saw the first 15 games? When he started saying, 'Man, I went 0-fer,' I said, 'You're not going to hit .450 and slug 1.500 your whole life.' But the way that he worked to get out of that little slump that he had, it shows how mature and how much of a professional he is for a 21-year-old."

Cameron credits that to lessons he has learned through the Astros' and Tigers' systems.

"I think in some parts of analytics, it was good for me to take in and learn about some little things," Cameron said. "I think [in Houston's system], I learned about the zone better and how to swing at better pitches and wait for my pitch and don't miss it. Over here, it's getting back to the mentality of things in terms of just keeping it simple. I think that, meshed together, has helped me progress and keep getting better."

That doesn't mean the Tigers will push Cameron to Detroit soon. They'll likely exercise similar patience with Cameron as they have with fellow outfield prospect Christin Stewart, letting Cameron learn his way through tears and slumps along the way. But with so few all-around outfield prospects in the system, Cameron has become a building block.

"For me, I just want to go out there and have fun and play, and the rest will take care of itself," he said. "I mean, yeah, you think about [the big leagues] sometimes, like, 'Oh, man, I'm getting close.' But the main thing is to go out there and play the game and help the team win."

Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast.

Detroit Tigers, Daz Cameron

Manning, Lugo to rep Tigers in Futures Game

Prospects to play in DC on July 15; Greene avoids serious injury; Candelario sits Friday
MLB.com

DETROIT -- Two players from the rebuilt Tigers farm system will represent the club at the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game. Former top pick Matt Manning and Triple-A Toledo second baseman Dawel Lugo will head to Washington to take part in the festivities at Nationals Park on July 15.

Manning, ranked second on MLB Pipeline's list of top Tigers prospects and 47th on MLB Pipeline's overall prospect list, will pitch for the U.S. Team. Lugo, ranked 12th among Tigers prospects, will pitch for the World Team. It's the first Futures Game selection for both players, and the third consecutive year the Tigers have had two players on the team.

View Full Game Coverage

DETROIT -- Two players from the rebuilt Tigers farm system will represent the club at the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game. Former top pick Matt Manning and Triple-A Toledo second baseman Dawel Lugo will head to Washington to take part in the festivities at Nationals Park on July 15.

Manning, ranked second on MLB Pipeline's list of top Tigers prospects and 47th on MLB Pipeline's overall prospect list, will pitch for the U.S. Team. Lugo, ranked 12th among Tigers prospects, will pitch for the World Team. It's the first Futures Game selection for both players, and the third consecutive year the Tigers have had two players on the team.

View Full Game Coverage

The 20-year-old Manning earned the selection in his first full pro season, having just advanced from Class A West Michigan to Class A Advanced Lakeland last week. The lanky right-hander just struck out nine batters over five scoreless innings of one-hit ball in his Florida State League debut, improving to 4-3 with a 3.12 ERA between the two stops. He has racked up 85 strikeouts over 60 2/3 innings, allowing 48 hits, 30 walks and just three home runs.

The 23-year-old Lugo, acquired from Arizona in the J.D. Martinez trade last July, has been building a case to be Detroit's second baseman of the future while at Toledo. He entered play Friday batting .273 (90-for-330) with 19 doubles and 34 RBIs, though his two home runs and five walks result in a .649 OPS.

Video: DET@NYM: Lugo drives in first Tigers' run in 9th

MLB.com will live stream and MLB Network will exclusively televise the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game at 4 p.m. ET, with Greg Amsinger, Harold Reynolds, Lauren Shehadi and Jim Callis calling the contest live from Nationals Park. The game will also be available to SiriusXM subscribers.

Greene exam shows shoulder inflammation
Closer Shane Greene could breath a sigh of relief Friday after an exam of his ailing right shoulder showed no structural damage.

"Everything has come back about as good as you can expect," manager Ron Gardenhire said. "It's inflammation in his shoulder, no structural damage at all, a little bursitis which every pitcher has. A little dead-arm syndrome, but basically we got the best news we could possibly get."

Greene, who went on the 10-day DL on Monday following a drop in velocity in his last outing, traveled to Dallas earlier this week to visit with Dr. Greg Pearl, the vascular surgeon who operated on his arm a few years ago after he was diagnosed with an aneurysm.

"I was pretty rattled about how I was feeling," Greene said. "Now that we have answers, I can pitch with a clear mind. Good to go."

Greene plans to resume playing catch Saturday, and hopes to be back pitching before the All-Star break. Whether he goes back to his regular program of throwing before games every day is a topic of discussion. Gardenhire said Friday he'd like Greene to back off of that for now.

"There's obviously going to be some adjustments made along the way," Greene said, "but nothing crazy."

Funkhouser, Robson win Tigers monthly Minors awards
Kyle Funkhouser has been pitching with relatively little fanfare this season at Double-A Erie compared with higher-ranked teammates like Beau Burrows and Alex Faedo. However, the Tigers' seventh-ranked prospect, per MLB Pipeline, picked up some well-deserved recognition this week with his selection as Tigers Minor League Pitcher of the Month for June.

"Obviously, when you're around better talent, you seem to play better, at least the good ones do," said Funkhouser, who went 4-1 with a 0.94 ERA in five June starts. "They step up to the plate, get promoted and kind of just do what they've been doing. A lot of guys just keep it simple and stay within themselves. When you get outside of your comfort zone and outside of who you are, that's when you really seem to struggle."

Video: Road to Detroit: Kyle Funkhouser

Funkhouser might have had some of that early in the season, walking 11 batters over 18 innings in April before posting a 5.03 ERA over six starts in May. He didn't pick up his first victory until June 6, then won four times in a five-start stretch.

A large part of that, Funkhouser acknowledged, was commanding and honing his pitches.

"For the most part, just fine-tuning command, being able to pitch fastball to four quadrants, up down," Funkhouser said. "But for me, the two biggest things were to tighten up my breaking balls a little bit and then just work on and keep developing my changeup and use it more."

Toledo outfielder and Windsor, Ontario, native Jacob Robson won Tigers Minor League Player of the Month honors after batting .304 (31-for-102) with 22 runs scored, eight doubles, three triples, three homers and 19 RBIs between the Mud Hens and SeaWolves. He ranks 26th on MLB Pipeline's Tigers prospect list this season.

Quick outs
• Third baseman Jeimer Candelario was out of the lineup for a second straight game Friday night as the Tigers try to snap him out of an 0-for-9 streak and 7-for-48 slump since June 22.

"Today is no-swing at all, orders by me," Gardenhire said. "I want him to leave the bat alone. He was reluctant, but it doesn't matter. I just don't want him to pick up the bat today. I think he has tired hands and arms, and sometimes you just need to forget the bat and relax a little."

• Gardenhire, who missed a second straight game Thursday due to dehydration, said Friday he feels "a lot better. I haven't eaten a lot, but all the other stuff is kind of gone. I've yelled at a few people, so I'm good."

Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook.

Detroit Tigers, Jeimer Candelario, Shane Greene, Dawel Lugo

Tigers agree to deals with 2 top int'l prospects

MLB.com

The Tigers have signed more than 60 prospects during the last two international signing periods and are once again making a big splash this time around.

The Tigers have signed more than 60 prospects during the last two international signing periods and are once again making a big splash this time around.

:: 2018 International Signing Period ::

According to industry sources, the club agreed to a $1.8 million bonus with outfielder Jose De La Cruz, ranked No. 15 on MLB.com's Top 30 International Prospects list, and it also has a deal with shortstop Adinso Reyes (No. 19) for $1.45 million.

The Tigers have confirmed the signing of Reyes, as well as that of fellow Dominican shortstops Angel Cruz and Geury Estevez. The latter two are unranked.

The busy first day reflected a combination of the Tigers' focus on player development and a larger international spending pool the last couple years.

"We're excited," Tigers international operations director Tom Moore said, "and we're continuing to be aggressive."

De La Cruz is considered a great overall package with lots of tools and has some of the best raw power in the class. The teen is very athletic with a strong and projectable body. His arm is strong enough to play the corner-outfield positions, but he'll likely start his professional career in center field.

Reyes already shows a good approach at the plate with decent power and a good hit tool. There's belief that the right-handed hitter will show more power with an improved swing and a focus on his overall hitting mechanics after signing. On defense, he shows good hands and a good arm, and there's a chance he will end up at third base because of his skill set and his body type at 6-foot-1 and 195 pounds.

Video: Top International Prospects: Adinso Reyes, INF

The preference, Moore said, is to keep Reyes at short.

"He's an athletic kid, and obviously as we've seen over the recent time in the big leagues, there are some physical shortstops," Moore said. "For us, the athleticism is what makes us think he's going to play at short. And we're really excited about the bat speed. He hits to all fields and with power to all fields."

Cruz is also 6-foot-1, but a bit more wiry at 165 pounds. The Tigers see him as a strong defensive shortstop with a controlled bat, line-drive power and good speed.

"Speed is definitely one of his tools," Moore said. "He's been on our radar. Our area scouts have been watching him for a year and a half."

The six-foot, 180-pound Estevez is a switch-hitter whom the Tigers project as a power hitter.

"He's been a kid that's really gotten stronger since watching him," Moore said, "and the power is starting to play out some."

According to the rules established by the Collective Bargaining Agreement, clubs that received a Competitive Balance Pick in Round B of the MLB Draft received a pool of $6,025,400, while clubs that received a Competitive Balance Pick in Round A of the Draft received $5,504,500. All other clubs, including the Tigers, received $4,983,500.

"The thing we're really excited about since the new Collective Bargaining Agreement is a more level playing ground with the signing pools," Moore said. "We're having signing pools we haven't had."

Teams are allowed to trade as much of their international pool money as they would like, but can only acquire 75 percent of a team's initial pool amount. Additionally, signing bonuses of $10,000 or less do not count toward a club's bonus pool, and foreign professional players who are at least age 25 and have played in a foreign league for at least six seasons are also exempt.

Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002.

Jesse Sanchez, who has been writing for MLB.com since 2001, is a national reporter based in Phoenix. Follow him on Twitter @JesseSanchezMLB and Facebook.

Detroit Tigers

Big names pepper Double-A All-Star rosters

Vlad Jr., Bichette, Tebow among headliners for Eastern League event
MLB.com

A handful of MLB Pipeline's Top 100 Prospects headline the Double-A Eastern League All-Star Game rosters that were announced Friday. Toronto top prospects Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Bo Bichette, and Colorado's Brendan Rodgers and Peter Lambert are among those on the stacked Eastern Division roster, while Detroit's Beau Burrows leads the Western Division roster.

Also included is Mets outfield prospect and former NFL quarterback Tim Tebow, who is in one of his most productive stretches of the season with a hit in his past six games. Tebow is hitting .261/.335/.398 this year with the Binghamton Rumble Ponies. He has five home runs and 30 RBIs in 67 games.

A handful of MLB Pipeline's Top 100 Prospects headline the Double-A Eastern League All-Star Game rosters that were announced Friday. Toronto top prospects Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Bo Bichette, and Colorado's Brendan Rodgers and Peter Lambert are among those on the stacked Eastern Division roster, while Detroit's Beau Burrows leads the Western Division roster.

Also included is Mets outfield prospect and former NFL quarterback Tim Tebow, who is in one of his most productive stretches of the season with a hit in his past six games. Tebow is hitting .261/.335/.398 this year with the Binghamton Rumble Ponies. He has five home runs and 30 RBIs in 67 games.

Guerrero Jr., the No. 2 prospect in baseball per MLB Pipeline, is a third baseman batting .407 with 11 homers for the New Hampshire Fisher Cats, and his teammate, No. 8 overall prospect Bichette, is hitting .280/.344/.447. Guerrero Jr. hasn't played since June 6, however, because of a left knee strain and might not be able to participate. Bichette, a shortstop, ranks second in the Double-A circuit with 85 hits.

Rodgers, the No. 7 prospect in baseball and the Rockies' top prospect, has hit 14 homers for Hartford, tied for fifth in the league, and has a .277/.333/.514 slash line.

Lambert, a Rockies right-hander, has a league-leading 2.23 ERA for the Yard Goats and is No. 91 on Pipeline's Top 100. In 92 2/3 innings, Lambert has struck out 75 and walked only 12. The announcement notes that Lambert will be unable to participate in the game, however, perhaps with a promotion to Triple-A Albuquerque on the horizon.

No. 66 prospect Beau Burrows, a right-hander ranked fourth in the Tigers' organization, is 6-5 with the Erie SeaWolves and has a 3.33 ERA. Burrows earned his spot with 65 strikeouts in 75 2/3 innings this season.

The All-Star Game will take place on July 11 at Arm & Hammer Park in Trenton, N.J.

Anne Rogers is a reporter for MLB.com based in Denver. Follow her on Twitter at @anne__rogers.

Toronto Blue Jays, New York Mets, Colorado Rockies, Detroit Tigers, Bo Bichette, Beau Burrows, Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Peter Lambert, Brendan Rodgers, Tim Tebow

Mize embraces expectations as No. 1 pick

Tigers prospect eager to learn professional ropes in Minors
MLB.com

DETROIT -- Right-hander Casey Mize, the top overall pick in the 2018 MLB Draft by the Tigers, sat down with outfielder Nicholas Castellanos and closer Shane Greene during their 619 podcast to talk about what it was like being a Division I student-athlete at Auburn, adjusting to life in the Minor Leagues and how he'll handle the expectations that come with being the first overall pick.

Mize joined Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg as players to go from undrafted out of high school to becoming the top pick out of college. Mize pitched three seasons at Auburn. In his final season, Mize threw three complete games, including a no-hitter, with 156 strikeouts and only 16 walks. He was a key reason the Auburn Tigers were still playing in the postseason, which meant Mize's season was not over when Detroit selected him. Mize was at Comerica Park on Monday to officially announce his signing.

View Full Game Coverage

DETROIT -- Right-hander Casey Mize, the top overall pick in the 2018 MLB Draft by the Tigers, sat down with outfielder Nicholas Castellanos and closer Shane Greene during their 619 podcast to talk about what it was like being a Division I student-athlete at Auburn, adjusting to life in the Minor Leagues and how he'll handle the expectations that come with being the first overall pick.

Mize joined Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg as players to go from undrafted out of high school to becoming the top pick out of college. Mize pitched three seasons at Auburn. In his final season, Mize threw three complete games, including a no-hitter, with 156 strikeouts and only 16 walks. He was a key reason the Auburn Tigers were still playing in the postseason, which meant Mize's season was not over when Detroit selected him. Mize was at Comerica Park on Monday to officially announce his signing.

View Full Game Coverage

Mize said he didn't know in advance that the Detroit Tigers were taking him No. 1.

"I think that made it even more special," Mize said. "Me, my family and my teammates all got to hear it at the same time, and I think that was really special."

Mize spent most of that day traveling back to Auburn after playing in South Carolina, and even when he got there, there wasn't much time to soak in the excitement of the Draft.

Video: OAK@DET: Mize talking about going No. 1, college days

"The next day you wake up and you kind of have to flush it because we were getting ready for the next weekend," Mize said. "We were going to Gainesville, Fla., to play the Gators. It was really cool. It was a cool process, but you had to enjoy it and not let it be too caught up in your mind."

The three years he spent playing at Auburn is when Mize said he learned how to fail, which ultimately made him good enough to be taken first overall. It was different from high school, where he was clearly the most talented player in almost every contest.

"Not being the best player on the field anymore, it beat me down a little bit," Mize said. "But I think I did a really good job of harnessing it because I wanted to learn from it, and I didn't want to be that guy anymore."

After Greene and Castellanos shared stories about their struggles early adjusting to life in the Minor Leagues, Mize admitted it's going to be a dramatic transition for him to go from major college baseball in the SEC to the lower levels of professional baseball.

"I have a lot of anxiety about that kind of stuff," Mize said. "I'm probably going to set a bunch of alarms and try not to miss anything."

Most players who get drafted and sign are going to be dealing with lofty expectations, set by a combination of themselves and everyone around them. This is especially true with the first overall pick. Castellanos said he found it useful to ignore those expectations and stay focused in the moment, but Mize said he has embraced the expectations that are being set for him.

"I think those expectations are a good thing, honestly," Mize said. "I'm trying not to look at that as a negative. I think that's a good thing that I even put myself in that position for that to even happen. Obviously, I'm going to try to put myself in position to meet those expectations and exceed them. That's the goal."

The 619 podcast is an unfiltered conversation between Tigers outfielder Nicholas Castellanos and reliever Shane Greene. Look out for new episodes featuring special guests and honest talk about life as a Major Leaguer. Download, subscribe and help others find the show by leaving a rating and review on iTunes or your favorite platform.

Tyler Fenwick is a reporter for MLB.com based in Detroit.

Detroit Tigers

Tigers agree to deal with No. 1 pick Mize

Third-round pick Clemens also agrees, according to source
MLB.com

DETROIT -- The Tigers have been anticipating Casey Mize in the Old English D since the spring. As the top overall Draft pick put on the cap and slipped on the jersey Monday afternoon in a news conference announcing his signing, Detroit's rebuilding effort received a major boost.

"It feels amazing," Mize said. "It's such an honor to be the first overall pick and join a great organization like the Tigers. I'm really appreciative of them considering me the best player in this Draft and taking me with the first selection. To have it be official, it really feels great."

View Full Game Coverage

DETROIT -- The Tigers have been anticipating Casey Mize in the Old English D since the spring. As the top overall Draft pick put on the cap and slipped on the jersey Monday afternoon in a news conference announcing his signing, Detroit's rebuilding effort received a major boost.

"It feels amazing," Mize said. "It's such an honor to be the first overall pick and join a great organization like the Tigers. I'm really appreciative of them considering me the best player in this Draft and taking me with the first selection. To have it be official, it really feels great."

View Full Game Coverage

Mize received a signing bonus around $7.5 million, MLB Pipeline's Jim Callis confirmed. It's lower than the $8,096,300 slot value assigned to the top overall pick, but it is a record bonus for a Draft pick in the pool bonus era, and it is tied for the second-largest bonus overall behind Gerrit Cole's $8 million bonus to sign out of UCLA in 2011. The Detroit Free Press first reported the bonus.

• Tigers Draft Tracker

The Tigers selected the Auburn right-hander with the No. 1 overall pick in the MLB Draft on June 4. A deal had been expected, and it became imminent once Mize was spotted at Comerica Park on Monday morning and worked out on the field with the team prior to batting practice.

"I was a little nervous to even go play catch," Mize said, "but it was really cool to even be out there on the field and interacting with some of the players. I felt a part of it a little bit, which was an awesome feeling. Even stepping in the dugout and just seeing the stadium, it was really cool. It's something I obviously hope happens a lot more, but it was the first time, so it was special."

Video: Draft 2018: Tigers draft RHP Casey Mize No. 1

Mize joined 2009 top pick Stephen Strasburg as players to go undrafted out of high school before becoming the top overall pick out of college. Mize tossed a no-hitter against Northeastern in March, propelling him toward a season worthy of his billing. The right-hander went 10-6 with a 3.30 ERA in 17 starts, striking out 156 batters over 114 2/3 innings with 84 hits allowed. Just as impressive, he surrendered just 16 walks.

"I got to see him come in as a freshman at Auburn," Tigers amateur scout Justin Henry said, "and seeing him in the college seasons and the Cape Cod League, how much better he got in three years was very impressive. But I think the most impressive thing was sitting down and speaking to him and getting to know him and hearing how he goes about his business. It was a different meeting than most of the meetings I have with players."

Said Detroit scouting director Scott Pleis: "He checked all the boxes -- physically, mentally, makeup, work ethic, all that stuff, along with the talent to do what he does on the field."

Mize's college career ended in the NCAA Super Regional a couple of weeks ago. Fittingly, after a few days vacationing with his family and girlfriend, he resumed working out in anticipation of his pro career.

"I got a few days of downtime and then I got pretty bored," Mize said.

Where that pro career will begin remains to be seen. Mize will work out in Lakeland, Fla., at the Tigers' Spring Training facility, but the club is still working out where and when he'll pitch.

"We're going to put down a plan together," Pleis said. "We pretty much know what we're going to do, but we're going to figure out how many innings, when he's going to do it. All that stuff's going to be mapped out."

Detroit also signed third-round pick Kody Clemens, according to a source. The University of Texas second baseman skyrocketed up Draft charts with a stellar junior season for the Longhorns, leading the Big 12 Conference with 19 regular-season home runs to go with 61 RBIs and a 1.140 OPS. Callis reports that Clemens received a $600,000 bonus.

The Tigers have not officially announced the Clemens signing, but Clemens announced in a tweet Monday he has decided to begin his pro career and sign.

Tweet from @kodyclem: pic.twitter.com/QHtiRYpTsk

"We're still finalizing that, but we're really close with that one," Pleis said.

Mize and Clemens are expected to travel from Detroit to Los Angeles for the Golden Spikes Award ceremony. The honor, which goes annually to the top player in college baseball, will be announced Wednesday night. Clemens is expected to begin his pro career shortly at Class A West Michigan.

The deals leave second-round pick Parker Meadows as the Tigers' lone unsigned selection out of their first 10 picks. The athletic high school outfielder has committed to play college baseball at Clemson, but his older brother, Pirates outfielder Austin Meadows, tweeted Sunday that his little brother was "off to pursue his dream."

Tweet from @austin_meadows: My lil bro is off to pursue his dream! So excited for this journey to start for you man! It���s finally here! @parkermeadows3

By signing Mize and Clemens for below their slot value, Detroit has Draft pool money available to use on Meadows, if it so chooses. A deal could come together in the next couple of days.

Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook.

Detroit Tigers

After Mize at 1, Tigers focus on position players

Outfielder Meadows, 2B Clemens among Detroit's top Draft picks
MLB.com

DETROIT -- From the No. 1 overall pick to a 6-foot-10 Division III pitcher, the Tigers demanded baseball's attention during the 2018 MLB Draft. The rebuilding organization stuck mostly to the college ranks and, despite a couple of its most intriguing picks, chose position players over pitchers.

Draft Tracker: See every Tigers Draft pick

DETROIT -- From the No. 1 overall pick to a 6-foot-10 Division III pitcher, the Tigers demanded baseball's attention during the 2018 MLB Draft. The rebuilding organization stuck mostly to the college ranks and, despite a couple of its most intriguing picks, chose position players over pitchers.

Draft Tracker: See every Tigers Draft pick

The Tigers had options to weigh with their No. 1 pick, something they hadn't done since 1997. There was a right-handed stud on the mound. A power-hitting catcher. A speedy shortstop with serious on-base potential. Of course, the Tigers went with the pitcher, Casey Mize, a junior from Auburn.

Video: Draft 2018: Tigers draft RHP Casey Mize No. 1

:: 2018 Draft coverage ::

Mize climbed up to the first overall pick relatively quickly, after not being drafted out of high school. Steven Strasburg, the top pick in 2009, did the same thing.

Scott Pleis, the Tigers' director of amateur scouting, said after Day 2 that the organization was simply going after the best available players for the most part. The Tigers have four starting-pitching prospects ranked in the top 70 on MLB Pipeline's Top 100 Prospects list. While they may have preferred that a hitter emerge as the clear top prospect in this year's Draft, the Tigers weren't swayed from Mize.

The Tigers went on to grab a few more pitchers early, including 6-foot-10 right-hander Hugh Smith from Division III Whitworth in Round 6. Smith has a fastball he said he can dial up to 98 mph, and Pleis said he wouldn't be surprised if Smith has touched 100 mph. But the Tigers only picked five pitchers in the first 17 rounds. By comparison, the Tigers took nine pitchers in the first 17 rounds last year.

The emphasis was instead put on position players. Grayson (Ga.) High School outfielder Parker Meadows was the Tigers' pick in Round 2. Meadows is the younger brother of Austin Meadows, who was picked ninth overall by the Pirates in 2013 and made his Major League debut in Pittsburgh this season. The Tigers went with another notable name in Round 3 when they selected second baseman Kody Clemens from Texas. Clemens is one of three sons of seven-time Cy Young winner Roger Clemens to be drafted.

Video: Draft 2018: Tigers draft 2B Kody Clemens No. 79

The Tigers snagged a couple of catchers this year. Christopher Proctor, from Duke, was taken in Round 13. Proctor isn't flashy either behind the plate or in the batter's box, but he's noted for having tools that can be developed in both spots. Another Day 3 pick with some intrigue is outfielder Avery Tuck of New Mexico Junior College. Tuck can play either corner in the outfield and could also be a fun bat to watch develop. He hit .385 this season with 52 RBIs in 179 plate appearances.

Aside from Meadows, the Tigers rarely dabbled in the high school ranks. Center fielder Kingston Liniak from Mission Hills (Calif.) High School was drafted in Round 4. He's committed to the University of San Diego. Third baseman Kelvin Smith, out of Redan (Ga.) High School, was taken in Round 20. Right-handed pitcher Cole Henry of Florence (Ala.) High School was ranked as the No. 137 prospect in this class but went to the Tigers in Round 38 because of his commitment to Louisiana State. He will be draft-eligible again in 2020.

Tyler Fenwick is a reporter for MLB.com based in Detroit.

Detroit Tigers

Tigers draft Mize No. 1 overall, add OF Meadows

Auburn righty has ace potential; HS outfielder could grow into needed impact bat
MLB.com

DETROIT -- Casey Mize has spent three seasons wearing the burnt orange and navy blue of the Auburn Tigers. On Monday, the gifted young right-hander became the newest hope of the Detroit Tigers, whose colors should suit him quite well.

Draft Tracker: Follow every Tigers Draft pick

DETROIT -- Casey Mize has spent three seasons wearing the burnt orange and navy blue of the Auburn Tigers. On Monday, the gifted young right-hander became the newest hope of the Detroit Tigers, whose colors should suit him quite well.

Draft Tracker: Follow every Tigers Draft pick

If the rest of his transition from college ace to franchise gem goes so easy, the Tigers might have their ace to front a potentially dominant future rotation.

:: 2018 Draft coverage ::

"I honestly don't think I ever bought into the fact that I could go 1-1," Mize said after becoming the top pick in Monday's MLB Draft. "I was kind of in denial for the longest time. I think about the strategy I had to do to make it work."

Once it happened, he wasn't sure how to react. It's the latest step in the incredible rise of Mize, who joins 2009 top pick Stephen Strasburg as players to go from undrafted out of high school to the top overall pick in college.

"The emotions, I can't really describe," Mize said. "It was pretty amazing, but I kind of went numb a little bit. I don't really know what I was feeling, but I was really happy the way everything turned out."

The Tigers also had the top pick of the second round, which they used to select Grayson (Georgia) High School outfielder Parker Meadows. The younger brother of Pirates rookie outfielder Austin Meadows is described as a raw hitter, whom the Tigers hope they can mold into the impact offensive player they desperately need to fill out their farm system.

Mize, by contrast, adds to an area where the Tigers already have depth. But he has the potential to become the best of the bunch.

Mize tossed a no-hitter against Northeastern in March, propelling him toward a season worthy of his billing. The right-hander has gone 10-5 with a 2.95 ERA in 16 starts, striking out 151 batters over 109 2/3 innings with 77 hits allowed. Just as impressive, he surrendered just 12 walks.

"If you look at his overall numbers in college, particularly this year, they're really off the charts," Tigers general manager Al Avila told Fox Sports Detroit on Monday evening. "And his repertoire of pitches are excellent. They're all either plus or plus-plus pitches. He's got a good repertoire, and he has a good idea of how to pitch, and obviously the strikeout-to-walk ratio, it's off the charts. You put all that together, and you have an advanced pitching prospect."

Video: NYY@DET: Tigers VP Avila on taking Mize 1st overall

While Mize's history drew comparisons to former Tigers great Justin Verlander -- who was the second overall pick in the 2004 Draft -- Mize is a different style of pitcher. His fastball hits the mid-90s, but it sets up a devastating split-changeup that some called the best pitch in the Draft, along with a slider and cutter. Avila said last week that Mize's secondary pitches are actually ahead of where Verlander's arsenal stood going into the Draft.

"We see guys with power. We see guys who have a good breaking ball, good slider, whatever. But you rarely see power guys with a plus slider, plus cutter and plus command," Tigers scouting director Scott Pleis said.

The Tigers landed the top selection by way of their 64-98 record last year, the same as the Giants but squeaking ahead on a tiebreaker. Depending on the players available, the top pick has either been a ticket to a can't-miss talent and future superstar, or first dibs at a Draft class without a clear-cut top option.

This year's field trended toward the latter, but Mize's dominance for most of the season and assortment of pitches put him atop the Tigers' list for most, if not all of the spring. Avila watched Mize pitch in person twice this spring, and met with him both times.

"It went very well, and I think the relationships that we made clicked very quickly," Mize said. "I think it just clicked for us, and what they had to say, I could tell they were obviously very knowledgeable and very interested."

Video: Draft 2018: Mize on being 1st overall pick

Said Pleis: "I think a Tiger was probably at every single start, except possibly one. We scouted him heavily, we knew we liked him, and it became apparent he was going to be one of those guys up at the top."

Avila told Fox Sports Detroit that the Tigers made the final decision on Mize on Sunday after a weekend of meetings between team officials and scouts at the Tigertown complex in Lakeland, Fla.

"We felt that he was the best player in the Draft this year, the one that would come in and give us the best impact, and we're very happy to have him," Avila said. "We feel he's advanced, and he's going to be a really great addition to the organization."

Mize becomes the second consecutive SEC pitcher to go with the Tigers' first-round pick, joining former University of Florida ace Alex Faedo. He's currently in the rotation at Class A Advanced Lakeland.

Video: NYY@DET: Tigers broadcast on drafting Mize at No. 1

Faedo is one of four Tigers starting-pitching prospects ranked in the top 70 on MLB Pipeline's Top 100 Prospects list, including fellow recent first-round picks Beau Burrows and Matt Manning. Detroit would have loved for a hitter to emerge as the top talent. While some position players stood out, including sweet-swinging Oregon State infielder Nick Madrigal and slugging Georgia Tech catcher Joey Bart, neither swayed the Tigers away from Mize.

"Everybody liked Casey," Pleis said.

MLB Pipeline agreed with the Tigers, putting Mize atop the Top 200 Draft prospects.

Like Faedo last year, Mize still has some college pitching to do with Auburn, which clinched a spot in the NCAA Super Regionals over the weekend. Faedo pitched the Gators to an NCAA title, racking up enough innings that the Tigers shut him down from pitching until this spring. If Mize and Auburn enjoy the same sort of roll, Detroit could well have him take the summer off as well.

"I think it depends on how far they go here in postseason play," Avila told FS Detroit. "It just depends on how far they go, if they go to the College World Series, and how much he pitches the rest of the summer. Then at that point, we can take a look and see if he will pitch for us a little bit here in the Minor Leagues or if we'll wait until the fall."

Though some evaluators believe Mize could be ready for the big leagues in a hurry, Detroit doesn't have any sense of urgency.

"He's got MLB stuff right now. He's a very talented person," Pleis said. "But we're not going to rush his development. We're going to take our time with Casey. He's thrown a lot of innings this season, and he's not done yet."

Asked if he had a timetable in mind, Mize chose his words carefully.

"I would say I'd like to get there as efficiently as possible, not as quickly as possible," he said. "I think whenever I'm ready, whenever Scott and Al and people decide that I'm ready, I would hope it would be as efficient as possible."

Meadows ranked 42nd on MLB Pipeline's Draft prospect list. Listed at 6-foot-5, 185 pounds, the left-handed hitter has a body frame that should fill out with age, which is seen as key to his offensive development. He is already long on athleticism, with the speed to potentially play center field.

Video: Draft 2018: Tigers draft OF Parker Meadows No. 44

"Just a quality guy, a plus athlete, huge upside, stays in center field, just a lot of things to like about him, and the bloodlines of his brother being a player," Pleis said. "Everything kind of added up for us, and we were happy he got to us with our second pick."

Meadows has committed to play college baseball at Clemson, but the Tigers can take advantage of the additional spending pool that comes with the top pick to try to convince him to turn pro. The Tigers' bonus pool of $12,414,800 is third-highest among all clubs, including a $8,096,300 slot value for the top pick. Teams with the first overall selection in recent years have signed their pick for below slot value and used the savings for later picks.

The Draft continues on today with Rounds 3-10. The MLB.com preview show begins at 12:30 p.m. ET, with exclusive coverage beginning at 1 p.m.

Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook.

Detroit Tigers

Tigers look to keep reloading farm with top pick

Mize, Bart headline Detroit's options for first overall selection
MLB.com

DETROIT -- The Tigers' rapid descent from perennial contenders to sellers last summer came with the reward of the top overall pick in the 2018 Draft. It's a jewel for an organization that has been working to refill its farm system with talent over the past year.

The 2018 Draft will take place today through Wednesday, beginning with today's Draft preview show on MLB Network and MLB.com at 6 p.m. ET. MLB Network will broadcast the first 43 picks (Round 1 and Competitive Balance Round A), while MLB.com will stream all 78 picks on Day 1. MLB.com will also provide live pick-by-pick coverage of Rounds 3-10 on Day 2, with a preview show beginning at 12:30 p.m. ET. Then, Rounds 11-40 can be heard live on MLB.com on Day 3, beginning at noon ET.

View Full Game Coverage

DETROIT -- The Tigers' rapid descent from perennial contenders to sellers last summer came with the reward of the top overall pick in the 2018 Draft. It's a jewel for an organization that has been working to refill its farm system with talent over the past year.

The 2018 Draft will take place today through Wednesday, beginning with today's Draft preview show on MLB Network and MLB.com at 6 p.m. ET. MLB Network will broadcast the first 43 picks (Round 1 and Competitive Balance Round A), while MLB.com will stream all 78 picks on Day 1. MLB.com will also provide live pick-by-pick coverage of Rounds 3-10 on Day 2, with a preview show beginning at 12:30 p.m. ET. Then, Rounds 11-40 can be heard live on MLB.com on Day 3, beginning at noon ET.

View Full Game Coverage

Go to MLB.com/Draft to see the Top 200 Prospects list, projected top picks from MLB Pipeline analysts Jim Callis and Jonathan Mayo, the complete order of selection and more. And follow @MLBDraft on Twitter to see what Draft hopefuls, clubs and experts are saying.

:: 2018 Draft coverage ::

Here's how the Draft is shaping up for the Tigers, owners of the first overall pick for the first time since 1997:

In about 50 words
The Tigers have the top overall pick in a year when the Draft crop doesn't have a clear-cut superstar. That doesn't diminish the importance of the pick in their rebuilding plans, though. Detroit needs a player who can be a key part of its next contending club.

The scoop
General manager Al Avila and assistant GM David Chadd have experience with a top pick in a muddled field of talent. They were both with the Marlins when Florida used the No. 1 selection in 2000 on a high-school first baseman named Adrian Gonzalez. He never played a game for the Marlins, but he's still playing today at age 36. Considering the Tigers' last No. 1 overall pick was reliever Matt Anderson, they'd gladly take a talent like Gonzalez this year.

First-round buzz
The Tigers have heavily scouted Auburn right-handed starter Casey Mize all season and had a detailed sit-down discussion with him. But Mize's recent struggles have added suspense to what looked like an inevitable selection. There's love in some corners of the organization for Georgia Tech catcher Joey Bart, who has emerged as a fearsome power hitter this spring and has drawn comparisons to Jason Varitek and Matt Wieters, but some question whether he profiles as enough of an impact player to supplant Mize. The Tigers have depth in both areas, but they have always picked the best-rated available player.

Video: Draft Report: Casey Mize, College pitcher

Money matters
Under the Collective Bargaining Agreement, each team has an allotted bonus pool equal to the sum of the values of that club's selections in the first 10 rounds of the Draft. The more picks a team has, and the earlier it picks, the larger the pool. The signing bonuses for a team's selections in the first 10 rounds, plus any bonus greater than $125,000 for a player taken after the 10th round, will apply toward the bonus-pool total.

Any team going up to 5 percent over its allotted pool will be taxed at a 75 percent rate on the overage. A team that overspends by 5-10 percent gets a 75 percent tax plus the loss of a first-round pick. A team that goes 10-15 percent over its pool amount will be hit with a 100 percent penalty on the overage and the loss of a first- and second-round pick. Any overage of 15 percent or more gets a 100 percent tax plus the loss of first-round picks in the next two Drafts.

The Tigers have a bonus pool of $12,414,800 for the first 10