Breaking a trend of selecting hard-throwing pitchers, the Tigers have selected prep outfielder Riley Greene at #5 overall in the MLB draft.
Greene, a left-handed hitter, is the impact bat Tigers fans have been craving. At 18 years old, he’ll take a little more time to develop than one of the college bats might have. Currently, he has elite contact skills and possesses an advanced approach at the plate, with plate discipline beyond his years. Greene projects to hit for power to all fields, though he still has to grow a bit more into his frame, as he’s more a line drive hitter right now.
Greene’s biggest weakness is on defense, where his athleticism and weak arm project him to either left field or first base. Granted, if he hits his ceiling with regard to power and patience, his defensive home won’t matter so much, but don’t expect Greene to be a wizard in the field.
As a high-school hitter, Greene will take some time to reach Detroit, but if all breaks right, expect an elite power threat who can hit in the center of the lineup for years to come.
More at MLB.com
Scouting Report at Bless You Boys
The Tigers’ offense has been abysmal this year. Detroit ranks 29th in fWAR and wRC+, and 28th in wOBA, all metrics used to roughly evaluate raw offensive output. Offensive black holes like Josh Harrison and Grayson Greiner litter the diamond, and with Miguel Cabrera showing his age and Nicholas Castellanos not flashing any power, the position players look anemic at the plate. But there has been one bright spot in Niko Goodrum.
Goodrum, of course, doesn’t look like he’s done particularly well, hitting .213/.311/.341 in 190 plate appearances. He’s defensively useful, since he can play both outfield corners as well as either first or second base, but a cursory look at his 0.1 fWAR makes Goodrum look like yet another scrub in a bad lineup.
So why is the young utility player a bright spot? A deeper examination of Goodrum’s hitting stats shows that he’s been very unlucky, and that he’s not only due for a rebound, but hitting the ball better than last year. Let’s dive into some numbers and see why.
More after the cut