2011 TigsTools: Best Change-up

The Tigers have long demonstrated a preference for hard throwers with classic power arsenals. That preference has often left the system without many true plus change-ups; a trend that continues with the current crop of Tigers prospects. Many of the organization's left-handers feature the better change-ups around, but the list is topped by one of the elite level right-handers in the system.

Best Change-up
1. Jacob Turner (RHP)
2. Adam Wilk (LHP)
3. Drew Smyly (LHP)
4. Alex Burgos (LHP)
5. Shawn Teufel (LHP)

Turner has made progress with his change-up since signing out of high school. His feel for the pitch has improved dramatically and he began locating it better in 2011. He trusts his grip and maintains his arm speed well, adding to the deception. He has an outside shot of developing a plus change, but will likely settle in as more of an above-average pitch.

Wilk is just a half tick behind Turner with a max ceiling of a 55 on his change-up, though he keeps it low, fades it to the arm side and locates it well to both sides of the plate. Smyly and Burgos have both flashed average change-ups in the past, while Teufel will throw down an average one from time to time.

Honorable Mention
Kenny Faulk (LHP)
Austin Wood (LHP)

Kenny Faulk has always been a fastball-change reliever but he more consistently showed an average change-up in 2011, earning consideration for the back of this list. Wood has also shown an average change-up recently and there were some scouts that believed it could be better than that long term.

Projection Kings
Danny Hernandez (RHP)

The 2011 season saw big strides for Hernandez, most notably with his trust of the change-up and willingness to throw it to left-handed hitters in tough counts. With continued progress he has a chance to have a plus change-up down the line.

Others Considered
Trevor Feeney
Jade Todd

Feeney and Todd both show fringe-average change-ups at times and Todd will even flash better than that once in a while. Neither truly trusts the pitch and they both need to improve their feel for the grip and release of their change-up.

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2011 TigsTools: Best Change-up

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