It’s been a slow start for the Tigers farm teams with Lakeland being the only one with a record over a .500 (12-9).
Robbie Ray (LHP), the other pitcher acquired in the Doug Fister trade, is off to a solid start for the Mud Hens. Posting a 2-2 record with an ERA of 1.93 in four starts, he’s allowed just five runs in 23 innings pitched. With 16 strikeouts, five walks and a WHIP of 1.07, he’s ranked fourth on the Tigers Top 10 Prospects list according to Baseball America.
Corey Knebel (RHP), the first round pick for the Tigers (38th overall) in 2013 is ranked seventh on the top 10 prospects list. According to Baseball America, Knebel has the best curve-ball of all prospects in baseball. He is 1-0 with an ERA of 1.29 and eight strikeouts in seven innings pitched. However, with five walks, his WHIP is 1.43. If he gets his walks under control, he could get a look in Detroit, especially with a bullpen that ranks near the bottom of the American League.
Chad Smith (RHP), the reliever out of USC, is off to a good start this season. He has an ERA of 2.45 with 12 strikeouts over 11 innings pitched and a WHIP of 1.09.
Kyle Ryan(LHP), the left-handed starter picked in the 12th round of the 2010 draft, is the only starter in Erie that has an ERA lower than 4.00. He’s 2-2 with an ERA of 3.13. He’s pitched 23 innings recording 18 strikeouts while batters are hitting just .183 against him.
Jake Thompson (RHP) is ranked fourth amongst Tigers prospects, according to MLB.com. He’s 2-1 with an ERA of 1.05 and a WHIP of 0.90. He’s pitched 25 innings while recording 22 strikeouts. Expect to see him in Erie by the middle of the summer.