30. Darlyn Duran – Left-handed Pitcher
Duran's first season in a stateside league will be looked upon with some scrutiny, as the young lefty has the raw stuff to make some noise at the lower levels. His command must come around, but with a projectable fastball and two above-average off-speed pitches, he has the makings of a nice prospect.
29. Charlie Furbush – Left-handed Pitcher
While it is unfortunate, Furbush takes a huge tumble in the rankings after undergoing Tommy John ligament replacement surgery on his left elbow. The injury knocks Charlie out for the entire 2008 season, and likely the start of the 2009 season. If he can regain his velocity and command after his rehab, he could quickly re-establish his prospect status as one of the top lefties in the system.
28. Deik Scram - Outfielder
Following a majorly successful season split between West Michigan and Lakeland in 2007, Scram was pushed aggressively to Double-A Erie in 2008. He continues to hold his own after that big jump, but he's not wowing scouts and isn't showing the contact ability he demonstrated last year.
27. Francisco Martinez – Third Baseman
Early returns indicate Martinez has flashed all five tools during his debut professional season. Though he's split his time in the field between first and third base, he's flashed solid range and decent instincts, to go along with a consistent stroke and a knack for getting on base nearly every game. The power is there during BP, but hasn't translated to games.
26. Eddie Bonine – Right-handed Pitcher
Bonine came roaring out of the gates at Toledo this spring, and positioned himself for a shot in Detroit when injuries attacked the Tiger rotation. He doesn't profile as much more than a fourth or fifth starter, but with an average fastball with excellent command, a good curve and a knuckleball, there's enough there to make a big league career.
25. James Skelton - Catcher
And the eye brows rise. Skelton's lofty ranking following his breakout 2007 was powered by some excellent numbers, but lacked the substance of the scouting reports to back it up. As the reports have firmed up, Skelton's good defense and on-base keep him on track as a nice prospect, but his inability to handle multiple days in a row behind the plate, and complete lack of power, are significant red flags.
24. Audy Ciriaco - Shortstop
Having long been considered one of the Tigers higher ceiling prospects, things are slowly coming around for the talented shortstop. At the plate, he's seeing the ball better, cutting his strikeouts, and beginning to drive the ball with more authority. His defense still lags behind, and a move to third base could be in his near future, but all the tools are still there to become a top notch prospect.
23. Lester Oliveros – Right-handed Pitcher
After allowing Lester to dominate the VSL for two straight seasons, the organization brought him stateside and pushed him hard to Oneonta. He's quickly responded with a fastball that sits at 93-95, and a devastating plus slider, and he looks more and more like a true closer prospect each day.
22. Duane Below – Left-handed Pitcher
Below's command has lagged after his superb 2007 season at West Michigan, but he's still getting plenty of strikeouts and turning in a wealth of solid performances. His stuff still only grades out as fringe-average to average across the board, but he mixes pitches well and works hard on the mound to make his arsenal work to its fullest.
21. Jon Kibler – Left-handed Pitcher
After years of few lefties scattered across the prospect landscape, the Tigers have seen the emergence of several very good lefties over the last two years. Kibler has been one of the faster rising southpaws in the organization and with a fastball that has worked in the low-90s, and a dramatically improved curveball, there is more than enough stuff to propel him even further up this list.