Prospect Profile: Anderson Hernandez

On Thursday the Tigers made a deal to acquire a backup Catcher - and in turn, gave up one of the Tigers top 50 prospects, Shortstop Anderson Hernandez. Read inside to see exactly what the Tigers gave up in Hernandez.

Anderson Hernandez
Position: Shortstop/Second Base Height: 5-9 Weight: 150
Born: 10/30/1982 Bats: Both Throws: Right

Background
The Tigers signed Hernandez out of the Dominican in 2001 with hopes he would develop into their shortstop of the future. The young speedster had consistently struggled at the plate heading into 2002, when he had a slight breakthrough. Hernandez started the season by posting a .309/.342/.396 line in 139 at-bats with High-A Lakeland, followed by a .274/.326./376 line with AA Erie in the Eastern League. The 2004 season was by far Hernandez's most impressive offensively, while he has maintained his stellar defense. Since debuting in the Gulf Coast League in 2001, Anderson has displayed outstanding defensive abilities that continue to give the Tiger front office hope that he will be a contributing Major League player.

Scouting Report
In the field, Hernandez has few superiors. He displays exceptional range, great footwork, soft hands, and a very strong arm. All of this combined easily makes him the best defensive infielder in the organization, and allows him to maintain a full time role. Unfortunately, his defensive wizardry cannot help him in the batter's box. Outside of his plus speed, Hernandez does not have much going for him offensively. Hernandez lacks strength, the ability to pull the ball, and pitch recognition skills, leading to very few hard hit balls and a lot of strikeouts. Anderson has not found the ability to improve his judgment of the strike zone and without this; it is unlikely Hernandez will advance much offensively. Overall, Hernandez's offensive game has a long way to go before he has a chance at making a big league roster that defensively, he is ready for.

Performance

Year

Team

AB

AVG

2B

HR

RBI

SO

BB

SB

CS

OPS

2004

Lakeland

139

.309

6

0

14

31

8

8

0

.738

2004

Erie

394

.274

19

5

29

89

26

17

6

.702


Health Record
Anderson has encountered no major injuries at this point in his career.

The Future
Prior to his trade to the Mets, Hernandez was slated to be prematurely pushed to AAA Toledo with the emergence of top prospect Tony Giarratano behind him, but he would likely be better served repeating AA in 2005. Hernandez will need to build on his mild improvements of 2004 to keep himself moving towards the highest level. The biggest keys for Anderson will be improving his plate discipline and continuing to gain more strength. If he can improve these two areas, leading to more line drives, Hernandez's glove could carry him to a solid career as a backup or utility infielder. Without some huge jumps in his offensive game, Hernandez will be lucky to see the Major Leagues.


Tigs Town Top Stories