2013 TigsTools: Best Athlete

Nearly every player in Major League Baseball is an athlete to some degree, but there are athletes that stand out the second you see them on the field. The Tigers have boasted some impressive athletes to over the last decade. Check inside to see the best athletes in the system!

Those impressive athletes include Justin Verlander, Austin Jackson, and departed players like Gorkys Hernandez and Cameron Maybin. Few athletes in the current system can match those players athletic skill, but there are still athletes worth noting.

Best Athlete
1. Steven Fuentes (SS)
2. Daniel Fields (OF)
3. Connor Harrell (OF)
4. Tyler Gibson (OF)
5. Steven Moya (OF)

Fuentes remains a bit of an unknown despite a strong showing in the Gulf Coast League last summer. A compact athlete, he has explosive tools and carries one of the highest raw ceilings in the organization. Fuentes still has work to do to transition his athleticism and tools to game performance at higher levels, but you can't ignore the premium athleticism he brings to the table.

Outfield Daniel Fields has lost a little of the athleticism he carried when he entered pro ball, but he is still an excellent athlete with all-around skills on the field. Connor Harrell is much the same, offering excellent athleticism and a quality set of tools that can carry his play on the field.

Tyler Gibson is still in the mix at the top of this list, but his athleticism seemed to show up in some games and not in others throughout last summer. A gifted physical specimen, Gibson has the elite athleticism you look for in big time players, but his overall game remains extremely raw.

Moya doesn't get enough credit for being a good athlete. He is an average runner, quality leaper, shows good coordination and body control, and generally moves with a grace on the field that you wouldn't expect when he steps off the bus.

Honorable Mention
Rashad Brown
Miguel Paulino
Hernan Perez

Rashad Brown and Miguel Paulino are both very young and very raw, and both bring top notch athleticism to the table. Whether they can make things happen in game action to match their athletic gifts remains to be seen, but both are fun athletes to watch. Hernan Perez has the raw athleticism to play on the left side of the infield, including average speed, decent first step quickness and good strength. He comes up a little short of the top five, but is a serious contender as one of the better athletes in the organization.

Projection Kings
Willy Adames
Hector Hernandez
Austin Schotts
Zac Shepherd

Though all four of these players remain light years away from making their Major League debut, all four are quality athletes that could rank highly on this list in the future. Adames is a big kid that quality athletic ability and the potential to develop into a complete monster.

Hernandez and Schotts are speedy athletes that could play multiple sports, and both need to add strength to round out their athletic profiles. Shepherd is a relative unknown at this point, but when he makes his way to the States after playing in Australia, his athleticism is likely to stand out on the field.

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