German Emerging As A Potential Prospect
18-year-old right-handed reliever Francisco German continues to post solid numbers thanks to impressive stuff, during his first year stateside with the Detroit Tigers Gulf Coast League rookie ball squad. The Dominican native has a solid 4-0 record with a 3.00 ERA and 1.11 WHIP, with 23 strikeouts to just six walks over 18 innings.
German is raw, but projectable, featuring impressive arm speed, a late-breaking fastball that sits in the low-90s but has touched as high as 95 mph. He'll show you two different projectable breaking balls; a 75-77 mph curveball with tight depth and 10/5 action, and a low-80s slider with occasional two-plane break. Both offerings lack consistency, but feature legit swing and miss potential at the highest of levels. Control can become a bit of a bear at times, but German has show promise, making strides to throw strikes more often to put him in favorable positions.
German is far from a polished product, but he is undoubtedly a name to keep an eye on if you're a fan of projects like I am.
Check out German in action on the back fields below:
Pereira Showcasing Skills In GCL
A simple glance at his stats and it might be easy to overlook shortstop Anthony Pereira's breakout performance this season. Through 178 at-bats, Pereira has posted a respectable .258 batting-average and .706 OPS since his promotion to the Gulf Coast League. The 18-year-old's above-average speed has also yielded 11 stolen bases out of 15 attempts. As average as that might seem on the surface, Periera has taken a giant step forward developmentally this season.
"[Pereira] reminds me of some sort of combination of ex-Tigers Eugenio Suarez and Hernan Perez," an AL Scout opined. He continued, "He's raw, but loaded with potential at the plate. As we saw today in the second game, there's some raw power. Defensively it's easy to admire the instincts. Universally he's quickly rising up acquire lists, and rightfully so."
The homer that the scout who requested anonymity was referring to was a no-doubter to deep centerfield; no cheap feat for the pitcher friendly dimensions of the backfields in Lakeland.
After failing to make the cut this off-season, Pereira skyrocketed into the Midseason TigsTown Top 50 after an impressive spring, landing him in the Top 20.
Pereira is without question a name to keep an eye on in the Tigers system.
De La Rosa Nearing Return
Placed on the disabled list back in late-May with a strained lat, Tigers prospect flamethrower Edgar De La Rosa is nearing a return to the mound.
Limited to just 16 2/3 innings, De La Rosa struggled at Double-A Erie in his new relief role, posting a 7.56 ERA and 2.34 WHIP.
De La Rosa wasn't making any excuses, but he admitted that the injury most definitely played a part in his struggles this season.
"It hurt since the season started; honestly as far back as spring training I could tell something wasn't right," De La Rosa explained. "I feel ready to go now, but they're being cautious. The plan is for me to continue throwing bullpen for now, and then join the GCL team on the 18th."
The 24-year-old right-hander looked sharp in his latest bullpen. The secondary stuff looked sharp and the fastball velocity has returned to the upper-90s heat that he showcased last season in Lakeland.
Jimenez's Rehab Shut Down
Approximately 16 months removed from Tommy John surgery, Tigers prospect starting pitcher Eduardo Jimenez's rehab has unfortunately featured another setback.
"There's just pain," Jimenez stated when asked about the status of his rehab process.
Jimenez continued, "Not so much when I throw, but after. It's frustrating, but [I'm] listening to the trainers. I understand that I have to take my time. I be ok."
With just a month remaining in the GCL season, Jimenez has likely lost his second consecutive season due to the injury. Currently limited to throwing on flat ground, the plan is to resume throwing bullpens in a couple weeks, building up to a more realistic potential return to the mound in instructs, or winter ball.
The 20-year-old right-hander emerged as a Top 50 prospect for the Tigers last spring, after flashing an impressive fastball that scraped as high as 95 mph, solid secondary offerings and an advanced feel for the game.
James Chipman is TigsTown's Senior Lakeland Correspondent, covering the organization up close from Florida. Be sure to follow him on Twitter @J__Chipman.