Tigers first round draft pick Alex Faedo talks about coming to Detroit. Robin Buckson, The Detroit News
Welcome to Detroit, Alex Faedo. No pressure.
The Tigers' first-round pick in the 2017 Major League Baseball Draft hasn't even thrown a professional pitch yet, and he won't until 2018 after a heavy workload as the ace of the staff in leading Florida to the College World Series championship.
The rankings come the same week Faedo toured Detroit and signed his contract, which included a bonus worth more than $3 million after being the No. 18 overall pick last month.
Faedo is one of the three Tigers in the top 100, all pitchers – and an unusually high representation by Detroit in any top-100 prospects list.
Per Baseball America's rankings, the Tigers had one in the top 100 earlier this year, none in midseason 2016, and one early in 2016.
The other Tigers prospects on the list also were first-round picks – their last two, in fact. Matt Manning, the first-round pick in 2016 who is lighting it up at Single-A Connecticut (1.65 ERA, 18 strikeouts in 16.1 innings), is ranked No. 79. Beau Burrows, the first-round pick in 2015 who is off to a so-so start at Double-A Erie after dominating this year at Single-A Lakeland, is just behind at No. 80.
Faedo (21 years old), Manning (19) and Burrows (20) all are right-handers.
ESPN's Keith Law provided analysis on all three to The News on Friday afternoon
* On Faedo, whom Law called "a very Tigers draft pick" – in that he's big, physically, and a hard-thrower. Law saw Faedo against Vanderbilt this season, throwing between 90 and 94 mph. "With a plus slider that he threw a lot and a below-average changup. His delivery lacked rhythm and if that was all I'd ever seen of him, I would say he's 100 percent a reliever – but it's possible he needs more time to get his knees back to full strength." Faedo had knee surgery before his senior season.
* On Manning: "Manning has been really disappointing. Couldn't throw strikes earlier this year, now he's pitching but it's a lot of 91-92 and the curveball isn't good."
* On Burrows: "Burrows is making solid progress; still needs a better changeup and more fastball command."
The No. 1 overall prospect is slugging second baseman Yoan Moncada, traded this offseason to the White Sox as part of the Chris Sale deal. No. 2 is a familiar name, Vladimir Guerrero Jr., who, as an 18-year-old, has been raking at Single-A Lansing of the Blue Jays system.
Guerrero flew Thursday night to Florida, where he'll participate in the Futures Game, ahead of the All-Star Game. There's a good chance he won't return to Lansing, but rather stay in Florida with advanced Single-A Dunedin.
Another Lansing star with a familiar name, Bo Bichette – son of Dante Bichette – checks in at No. 44, after flirting with a .400 batting average all season with the Lugnuts.
There's one more name of note, one Tigers fans certainly will recognize: shortstop Willy Adames, traded to the Rays as part of the David Price deal in 2014, is ranked No. 13.