TigsTown Roundtable: Tigers First Round Pick

Ready to talk Tigers? Want to hear the opinion of the TigsTown staff on some of the hot button topics of the offseason? Welcome to the TigsTown Roundtable! This week's question: Who will the Tigers take in the first round of this year's amatuer draft?

Paul Wezner, Executive Editor
If the past few seasons are any indication, than the Tigers would likely be waiting for prep first baseman Eric Hosmer to fall to the Tigers. However, after years of the Tigers poaching the top talent, their luck will run out this year, as more teams will step up to pay the escalating price to sign the top talent. That still leaves the Tigers with plenty of talent to choose from. Ultimately, it will come down to the most talented player left on the board, and from what I see, that will be UGA reliever Josh Fields. Fields, ranked 19th by Scout.com among the top draft prospects in the nation, has an excellent two-pitch combo that should allow him to move quickly up the ladder, potentially making an impact in Detroit in the next 18 months.

Mark Anderson, Managing Editor
The Tigers are in on a lot of guys this year; prep first baseman Eric Hosmer, and right-hander Tim Melville, college relievers Ryan Perry, Josh Fields, and Andrew Cashner, Wichita State third baseman Conor Gillaspie, and many more. If Hosmer falls, as some speculate he may because of his strong Boras affiliation, the Tigers would be hard pressed to not make him the choice. However, I've heard too many rumblings about Ryan Perry and his big time arm out of Arizona. Perry hit triple digits in a recent regional outing in Ann Arbor, MI, and with an organization that has a penchant for arm strength, he might be too enticing to pass. While he doesn't maintain upper-90s velocity as a starter, there are some scouts who still believe he could succeed there. As things stand right now, unless someone drops in the Tigers lap, I think Perry is the guy that will be blazing fastballs past minor leaguers wearing Tigers regalia.

Jason Avery, Associate Editor, Amateur Baseball
Just like last year with Rick Porcello, I think the Tigers will draft another Boras client that slides sue to signability in American Heritage first baseman Eric Hosmer. There is a lot of speculation that Boras is seeking similar money to what Porcello got last year, and when you combine his power, arm, and athleticism, you have a special prospect on your hands. There has also been talk that owners aren't going to allow a Porcello-type slide this year, but until that happens, I'll remain skeptical that someone will pull the trigger early on him. Should Hosmer not be available, the Tigers could opt for Sarasota (Fla.) shortstop Casey Kelly, Wentzville (Mo.) Holt right-hander Tim Melville, or Orange Lutheran (Ca.) right-hander Gerrit Cole, who topped triple digits down the stretch. All could slide due to bonus demands. The Tigers could also opt for one of the many solid closers available in Georgia's Josh Fields, or TCU's Andrew Cashner, but if one of the top prep players is available, I expect them to go that route with Hosmer leading the way.

Have your own opinion on the issue? Ready to talk about it? State your opinion on the Detroit Tigers Open Message Board and go head to head with the experts!

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