Tigers (Down on the) Farm Report: April 2014

Nick Castellanos at Single-A Lakeland by Roger DeWitt, via Wikimedia Commons

Nick Castellanos at Single-A Lakeland by Roger DeWitt, via Wikimedia Commons

The Detroit Tigers Farm Report: April 2014

Hernan Perez (Shortstop)
Hitting just .197 in 34 games with the Tigers in spring training, his ability to play both second base  and shortstop makes him a good utility player. Perez is the 10th best prospect in the Tigers system according to team sources. He will start the season in Toledo but if injuries hit the Tigers, he could be one to consider.

Eugenio Suarez (Shortstop)
Ranked as the seventh best prospect in the Tigers system, Suarez got off to a hot start in Lakeland in 2013, hitting .311. He moved to Erie a short time later and hit .253. He will start the season in Erie as the everyday shortstop.

Corey Knebel (Relief Pitcher)
With the bullpen being the biggest question mark of the Tigers this season, there is a good reason why Knebel has stood out. With an ERA of 0.97 at West Michigan, including 41 strikeouts in 31 innings and 15 saves, he’s an arm to watch.

Drew VerHagen (Starting Pitcher)
VerHagen pitched well in Spring Training and has started the season in Toledo. Last year in the minors he was just 7-8 but posted an ERA of 2.90 with batters just hitting .220 against him in Lakeland and Erie. A right hander, he could make spot starts if injuries to the rotation occur this season.

Daniel Fields (Outfilder)
With Tyler Collins making the Tigers opening day roster, Daniel Fields’ time may have arrived. He will be starting the season in Toledo and can play center or left field. He batted .284 with Erie last year and could be an everyday player by next season.

Melvin Mercedes (Relief Pitcher)
With many similarities to Bruce Rondon, Mercedes tore up Lakeland and Erie picking up 23 saves with an ERA of 1.19 last season. Not a big strikeout pitcher so far, he could see some time in the Tigers bullpen in 2014. He starts the season in Toledo.