Archive for June, 2013

Furuya One Out From No Hitter

Thursday, June 27th, 2013

In his second ichigun start of his career Takuya Furuya was one out from pitching a no hitter, a rarity in Japan.  He gave up a triple to Tomotaka Sakaguchi but retired the next hitter to preserve the shutout.  The Chiba Lotte Marines went on to beat the Orix Buffaloes 7-0.

Furaya had a perfect game until a two out walk to Shinji Takahashi in the eighth.  Furaya was very contrite with the loss of the no hitter, apologizing to the fans and promising to do better next time.  Furaya threw a no hitter in a Marine minor league game in May.  His only other ichigun start was in 2006 in his only appearance of that year.  After that all his other appearances have been in relief.  This was his first appearance in 2013.

The Marines Shunichi Nemota ended any thought of a no hitter or shutout for Buffaloe starter Takahiro Matsuba.  He led the game off with a homerun.  The Marines chased Matsuba from the game with a 6-run fifth inning.  Tomoya Satozaki finished the game 4 for 4.  Tadahito Iguchi had a big 3-run double in the fifth inning to drive in half the runs.

The Marines are in first place in the Pacific Division two games ahead of the Rakuten Eagles.

On the Road to Dallas

Thursday, June 27th, 2013

Myworld will be on the road to Dallas tomorrow with our first stop in Memphis.  We will take in a Memphis Redbirds game.  Myworld hopes to see a Texas Ranger game while in Dallas but we are going to Dallas for a purpose other than baseball.  On our return we will be going through Mississippi to see the Mississippi Braves play, either in Pearl or Birmingham.  Reports may be spotty.

Nationals With Moore for Win

Thursday, June 27th, 2013

Tyler Moore snuck one into the Diamondbacks bullpen for a solo homerun in the fourth to tie the game 2-2.  The Diamondbacks chose to turn a double play on a Ryan Zimmerman ground ball out in the fifth to give the Nationals a 3-2 lead.  It held up.

Jordan Zimmermann worked seven innings to get the win.  The only runs he gave up were in the first inning.  He issued a one out walk to Aaron HillPaul Goldschmidt plunked one down the right field line that rolled into the corner for a double.  Hill was able to score from first.  Martin Prado lined a two out single in front of Jayson Werth to score Goldschmidt.  Werth could not field the ball cleanly in his attempt to scoop the ball to make the throw home.

The Nationals came back in the bottom frame.  The hot Anthony Rendon got the first of his three hits.  His average now sits at .354.  Ryan Zimmerman lashed one into the left field corner for a double to score Rendon.

Jordan Zimmermann handcuffed the Diamondbacks after the first inning, allowing only two more baserunners in the next six innings.  Miguell Montero walked to lead off the fourth but he was erased on a Martin Prado 5-4-3 ground into double play.  Jason Kubel followed with a single.  Zimmermann had his usual low total of four whiffs, retiring the last ten hitters before yielding to Tyler Clippard in the eighth.

Wade Miley pitched well for the Diamondbacks.  The lefthander was humming the ball at 93-94 miles per hour.  This is the first time myworld has seen Miley pitch and for some reason we thought he was a soft tosser.  He went seven innings giving up three runs.  The two Anthony Rendon singles to score the first run and set up the third run and the Tyler Moore solo shot proved to be his undoing.

Rafael Soriano came on in the ninth, giving up a one out single to Miguel Montero.  Martin Prado grounded one to Ryan Zimmerman who chose the out at first rather than make the tough throw to second.  Jason Kubel came up with the tying run at second.  Rafael did not want anything to do with him.  He walked him on four pitches, the last ball intentional.  A.J. Pollock popped up to Rendon to end the game.

Game Notes: Anthony Rendon almost hit a homerun in his fourth at bat.  It had too much vertical flight and not enough horizontal float, caught at the warning track by leftfielder Jason Kubel.  Rendon seems to hit the ball up the middle so seeing him pull the ball was good to see.  Opponents will start crowding him up the middle if he continues to spray his hits there…Didi Gregorius made a couple of good defensive plays.  The last time myworld saw him play was in Panama for the Netherlands in the World Cup.  He is a smooth defendor but Diamondback fans should expect his average to settle around .250…Myworld was also surprised to see Wade Miley’s ERA hover around 4.69.  Another victim of the sophomore slump.  He gave up seven runs in three of his last four May starts to inflate the high ERA…Willie Bloomquist was hit by a Tyler Clippard pitch in his pinch hit at bat in the eighth…A Stephen Strasburg tomorrow would give the Nationals another three game winning streak. Strasburg is facing Patrick Corbin, who has yet to lose a game this year.  He is 9-0. Corbin was traded by the Angels to the Diamondbacks for Dan Haren, currently the biggest disappointment of the Nationals.

Two Cubans Making it Look Easy

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

They didn’t begin the season as starters for their major league teams.  One could barely hit .250 in three minor league seasons.  Both are looking like Ted Williams once given a chance to play in the major leagues.

The Red Sox recently sent highly touted prospect Will Middlebrooks down to the minor leagues.  The reason?  They needed a place to play Jose Iglesias.  Iglesias had a .257 career minor league average.  Last year in the majors he hit .118 in in 68 at bats.  The major leagues is proving to be a different story.

This year.  In over 100 major league at bats he is hitting .434.  The Red Sox wanted to keep Stephen Drew at shortstop, even though Iglesias is noted for his phenomenal defense at short.  With Will Middlebrooks struggling along the Mendoza line Jose Iglesias will get his opportunities to start at third base.  It will be interesting to see if he can continue to hit at his current pace.

Iglesias never played in the Cuban professional league.  He defected playing for the junior national team in an international youth tournament in Canada.  The Red Sox gave him a $6 million bonus and signed him for $8.2 million for four years.  Until this year it appeared the Red Sox had thrown that money away.

Puig is a different story.  He defected from the Cuban professional league where he had some success in limited playing time.  The Dodgers were so impressed with him they signed him to a $42 million contract for seven years, more than a more proven player from Cuba Yoennis Cespedes.  Myworld wrote about Puig here:

Puig didn’t even need a full season in the minor leagues before the Dodgers called him up to help their crippled and moribund offense get started.  The numbers he put up in the minor leagues or the winter leagues could not portend the numbers he is putting up in the major leagues.

Puig slugged two homeruns and drove in five in his second major league game.  He hit a grand slam in his fourth game and bashed his fourth homerun in his fifth game.  Only two other major leaguers have ever accomplished that feat.  He also threw a runner out at home to give the Dodgers a victory showing there is some defensive chops to his game.

Currently he is making the major leagues looking easy, hitting .420 with seven homeruns and 14 RBIs in 21 games.  He has accomplished that in 81 major league at bats.  Myworld would be surprised if he can continue that pace.

UCLA Bruins Win College Baseball Championship

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

It is hard to believe with their storied history the UCLA Bruins have not won a college World Series.  Last year the Bruins had a pitching staff with Gerrit Cole and Trevor Bauer both drafted in the first round.  They fell short.  This year their pitching staff was better giving the Bruins the championship they thought they should have won last year.

For the seventh time in the last eight games the pitching staff held their opponents to one run or less.  The offense also exploded for eight runs to give the UCLA Bruins an 8-0 win and a two game sweep of the Mississippi State Bulldogs.

The Bruins did what they do best on offense, nicking at the Bulldogs like tiny razor blades to the skin with one or two run innings in first, third, fourth, sixth and eighth.  The Bulldogs could not generate any kind of offense against Nick Vander Tuig.  He went eight innings giving up only five hits.  Dave Berg got the pleasure of being at the bottom of the pile in the championship celebration, pitching the last inning to close out the victory.  He had done so on 24 occasions this year in games much closer than this one.

Eric Filia was the big bat with his five runs batted in on two hits.  He drove in the first two Bruin runs on a sacrifice fly and a squeeze bunt.  Leadoff hitter Brian Carroll scored three times, scoring the first two runs driven in by Filia.  It was small ball torture for the Bulldogs, proving the big bombs do not always win championships.

The Bruins finished the day with four sacrifice bunts, including one squeeze and two sacrifice flys.

LaRoche Blast Leads Nats

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

Adam LaRoche had yet to launch a homerun in June.  The offense was floundering with his silent bat and the injuries to Ryan Zimmerman, Bryce Harper and Jayson Werth were not helping.  At least for this day his bat came alive and the Nationals beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 7-5.

The Nationals jumped on Trevor Cahill early.  A 3-run homer by Adam LaRoche hit on an 0-2 count closed out a 5-run third giving the Nationals a big lead for Gio Gonzalez.  Denard Span drove in the first run with an RBI single.  He had prevented a run from scoring in the second with a strike throw to the plate, nailing the slowfooted Martin Prado as he tried to slide to the outside part of the dish.  A.J. Pollock tried to throw out Kurt Suzuki on the Span single but his throw was cut off.  Jayson Werth drove in the second run bouncing a single in the hole between short and third.  LaRoche then lifted his ball that barely entered the corner of the bullpen for a 3-run shot.

In the fifth the Nationals made it 6-0 with a Jayson Werth double followed by a Adam LaRoche single.  Werth barely slid into second for his double on a ball that bounced off the scoreboard.  Ian Desmond drove in Werth with a fly to right field.

The Nationals could not allow the fans to be comfortable in this game.  The Diamondbacks began teeing off on Gio Gonzalez in the sixth.  Even the outs were hit hard.  Aaron Hill got the sixth started with a double into the left field corner.  Paul Goldschmidt and Miguel Montero followed with singles to end the Gonzalez shutout.  The Nationals left a gapping hole the size of the Grand Canyon along the first base side for Montero to hit his single with LaRoche holding Goldschmidt at first and Anthony Rendon playing near second base for the left hand hitting Montero.  Myworld was just thinking about this hole when Montero found it.

Gonzalez was gone in the seventh after an A.J. Pollock single led off the inning.  A hard ground out by pinch hitter Cliff Pennington ended the day for Gio as Davey Johnson turned to Drew Storen.  Drew gave up a walk and a single to allow one run to score and Anthony Rendon let a hard hit 2-out grounder slip underneath his glove to allow a second run to score.  Now Storen was facing Cody Ross as the tying run at the plate.  He struck him out.

Tyler Clippard came on in the eighth and on a 2-2 count to leadoff hitter Martin Prado he delivered a pitch that Prado deposited into the left field bleachers.  The Nationals lead dwindled to two.  Tyler retired the next three hitters on ground outs.

The Nationals scored an insurance run courtesy of a Paul Goldschmidt error on a Denard Span grounder when his flip to pitcher Brad Ziegler was thrown behind him.  Steve Lombardozzi, who had hit a 2-out double scored when the ball rolled toward the first base dugout.

Rafael Soriano came out to close the ninth.  After getting the first two hitters out on hard line drives or long fly outs to Roger Bernadina he gave up three straight singles to pull the Diamondbacks to within two again.  Martin Prado, who had homered in his previous at bat came up as the go ahead run.  Soriano got him to ground out to short to end the game, avoiding what would have been another devastating loss.

Game Notes: Willie Bloomquist led the game off with a double over the head of Jayson Werth who did not track the ball well.  It appeared as if his groin was bothering him as he ran after the ball.  To Werth’s credit he finished the game 2 for 2 with two walks and two runs scored so myworld is glad he gutted it out…Martin Prado showed very little speed in being thrown out at home on a ground ball single up the middle.  A faster runner like Kurt Suzuki should have scored from second…With a runner on third Drew Storen threw a ball to the back stop that bounced back to the catcher Suzuki before Pollock could even think about scoring…Ryan Zimmerman did not start as he was resting his shoulder, which will continue to keep the controversey spiraling over the reason for his poor throws to first.  He pinch hit in the seventh with runners on first and third with two out and popped out to third.  Davey Johnson moved Anthony Rendon to third and put Steve Lombardozzi in the game to play second rather than bring in Zimmerman for defense…In the seventh the Nationals got a walk and two singles with no outs but Rendon was thrown out at home by Gerrado Para.  Para made up for it with an attempt to make a diving catch on a Steve Lombardozzi liner the next inning.  The ball hit off his glove and bounded away from him giving Lombo a double.  Lombo scored later in the inning on the errant throw by Paul Goldschmidt…Tyler Moore is back for the Nationals.  He was brought up when Dan Haren was placed on the disabled list.

The Agent (cont -6)

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

With Ruben, Larvell knew if he ignored his ideas long enough they would disappear. Ruben had a poor habit of failing to follow up on his ill fated schemes. With the President’s office Larvell figured that wouldn’t happen. September was racing towards him and he had to be prepared. Time would not stop to accommodate his needs.

Larvell called Jeremy to inquire about the bobbleheads. Jeremy seemed extremely pleased someone was finally expressing interest in them. “They’ve been sitting here for the past month collecting dust. I’ve been waiting for someone to tell me what to do with these things.” He had a slow Southern drawl, his words stretching longer than a midwest highway. Jeremy was the type of person who talked so slow Larvell felt forced to finish the sentence for him because he didn’t have the patience to wait for the words to sludge out. It was like waiting for the ketchup to empty from a virgin bottle. Larvell would take a knife to the ketchup to help it stream out.

“Have you taken a look at them?” Larvell asked. They would have been packed in cartons but it would be pretty embarrassing to have a Jason Woo bobblehead with a black face or throwing left handed.

“Yep. I opened one box.” The words dragged out. “They’re cute little suckers. I don’t want to open anymore. You’re just asking for them to get stolen then. He looks Chinese and he’s throwing right handed. What are we going to do with these things? I’ve got 50,000 of em down in the warehouse taking up a lot of space. I’d like to start moving em out so we can fill the space with something else.”

“I was going to give about 40,000 away in September for a Jason Woo bobblehead day.”

“Give them away. Seems like a waste. They cost us a pretty penny.”

“It’s called branding. Once we give these puppies away we can put the rest on the shelves to sell.” He didn’t want to tell him about the Chinese premier coming to see the game in September and his motivation to promote Jason Woo for the game by giving out his bobblehead on the day he was scheduled to make his major league debut. There is probably not a player in major league history to have a bobblehead day for his major league debut. The game would be internationally televised and millions of people in China would see these bobbleheads and want one of their own. He hoped he could sell the rest by the end of September and order a new batch for next year. It would also bring people to the park.

“I dunno. You mean I have to hold on to these till September. That’s almost the end of the baseball season. I don’t think that gives us much time to sell the extras in the last month of the season.”

“I think we’ll do fine. In fact, I’d like you to place an order for an additional 50,000 of these bobbleheads.”

There was silence on the other end. Larvell wondered if perhaps he got disconnected. The slow Southern drawl spoke in a higher pitch. “Another 50,000? You’ll have me swimming in these things. You going to give me something in writing on that before I place the order. These things didn’t come cheap. Just because they were made in China doesn’t mean they weren’t costly to produce.”

“I’ll give you something in writing.”

“Hopefully we don’t plan to give half of these new 50,000 away.”

“I don’t think you will have to worry about stocking the bobbleheads after November. You might even want to prepare to place an order for 100,000 more.”

“I dunno. This Jason Woo fella is popular, but I don’t think he is that popular,” his slow drawl dripped out. “As long as we got the funds and you give me the request in writing I’ll order as many bobbleheads as you want. But the warehouse can only hold so much. We’ll need more warehouse space if you order too many of those things and we can’t sell them and that will just increase our expenses.”

“You know where we can get uniform jerseys made?”

“Major league baseball has a contract with a factory in China to make jerseys. We don’t do much business with them because people don’t like to buy jerseys with any of our player’s names on them.”

“Can we have ten thousand jerseys with the names “Warrior” on them and fifty thousand with the name “Woo”?”

“We can probably do that. Again, get me something in writing and I’ll place the order.”

“You’ll get your something in writing by tomorrow. Can we get these jerseys by September?”

“This is June. If you can get me something in writing by next week I can place the order by the end of the month. A September delivery time should not be a problem since this would not be a very large order. What jersey number you want to give them.”

“Hold on.” Larvell got out the latest program and scanned the current roster numbers for the Orioles. “Number twenty two for the Warrior and eighteen for Woo.”

“As soon as I get your request in writing I’ll place the order. If you wait too long like mid-July a September delivery schedule may not be possible.”

Bruin Pitching Gets Them the Opener

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

The UCLA Bruins may not have the bats, but when they have a pitching staff that holds teams to one run or less they don’t need much from the bats.  UCLA won the opener against the Mississippi Bulldogs 3-1 behind the pitching of Adam Plutko who went six innings, giving up just one run.  The bullpen finished the game, including Dave Berg who picked up an NCAA record 24th save despite giving up two hits.

Eric Filia contributed a 2-run single in the fourth to give the Bruins a 3-0 lead then played some great defense in right field to rob the Bulldogs Trey Porter of extra bases in the bottom frame.

The Bulldogs put two runners on in the bottom of the ninth with one out and the go ahead run at the plate but Bruin closer Dave Berg gritted it out by getting a fly out and ground out to end the game.

The Agent (cont -5)

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

Arnold talked fast but he talked clear. Kevin tried to drink it in. “Do you have an extra handout? I’d like for Jason to have one when he gets back.”

“Sure.” Arnold bent down, opened up his silver brief case now lying on the kitchen floor, pulled out another stack of papers stapled on the left and handed it to Kevin.

“Most teams do not like the arbitration process so they try to negotiate long term contracts with a player before they hit arbitration. They like for these contracts to cover a year or two of a player’s free agency. It establishes cost certainty in a team’s salary structure and it provides security for the player in case of injury. Depending on the circumstances it could be in the player’s best interest to negotiate a long term contract during the first couple years when the player has no leverage. Most teams do not like to negotiate contracts for more than three years, especially a pitcher where the risk of injury is so great.”

Arnold pushed a button on his computer and the screen moved to a new page. This page shows the percentage they take from the negotiated salary. “This percentage only applies if we can negotiate a salary that is above the median salary for the position one of our client’s plays. This is one reason why we try to limit the number of clients we represent. You can’t fall above the median if you represent everybody. We try to focus on quality over quantity. Since we pursue the best we do okay representing the best. Rarely are we forced to agree to a contract for a player that falls below the median salary for his position.”

Arnold moved to the third page which summarized Kevin’s issues. “I’ll be blunt. Based on your career numbers we would never be able to go above the median for the catching position based on your production on the baseball field to date. We could try to emphasize your defensive skills, but those variables do not translate well to the person making the decision during the arbitration process. What interests us the most about your case is the amount of money you could be making in endorsement deals or royalty payments from an international standpoint. Are you getting any kind of royalty payments from those using your name?” Arnold asked, pushing his glasses up. They had dropped to the point where Kevin could see the pupils in his eyes dancing. They looked like popcorn seeds bouncing in a microwave.

“Jason and I are getting nothing.”

The page for Kevin was broken into two columns, positives and negatives. “The biggest negative for you is your offensive production is well below the mean for catchers so we would have great difficulty negotiating a contract above the mean. So from a practical standpoint, representing you would not make sense because we would be working for free. Since your contract would always be below the median, we would not be entitled to collect a percentage based on our contract policy. A loss for us.”

“I could allow you to take a percentage,” Kevin interrupted.

Arnold shook his head and smiled a crooked smile to match his teeth. “It would not be a good use of our time.” Arnold’s gaze returned to the wall. “On the positive side, there seems to be a number of resources out there capitalizing on your name, video games, songs and posters. Currently, all this activity is occurring in China so I don’t know how easy or profitable it would be for us to pursue getting royalties for the use of your name. It would be much easier if some of these uses were occurring in the United States because we have a better footing on protecting trademarks here. However, because the China market is so large we would be willing to pursue that area for a percentage of any royalty fees we collect and represent you in salary negotiations for free. I am also confident we can get you a lucrative number of endorsement deals and we would take the same percentage from you as far as our compensation back for getting you these endorsement deals.”

The last slide was for Jason. He had no negatives other than an injury to his arm decreasing his value. He had great potential for earning a salary way above the median. He also had tremendous potential for the same branding issues because of his name being used. “What is surprising is that while Jason has great potential for financial endorsements here as well as in China, you seem to exhibit equal popularity with him in China. I must preface this by saying this is based on one night of research done by one of my assistants, but your portfolio in China seems to show just as much promise as Jason. Jason seems to be more popular to the Chinese who have relocated to the United States. Your wife also seems to have some potential for revenue activity, if that is an area she wishes to pursue. We don’t normally represent those who are not athletes, but in China she has tremendous potential for endorsement deals. We would be willing to represent her for the same percentage fee as we would assess you. Since you two are married we would assume you would want any kind of endorsements that involved travel to China to run concurrently. I don’t know how long the popularity will last for the two of you, so we should ride this wave while it is at its peak before it crashes to shore. Once the wave crashes you’ve lost your momentum and it will be difficult to get it back.”

On one of the slides for Jason was the word “thunder” followed by a “?”. “What is intriguing is the reports of thunder after the completion of Jason’s starts. This would be a marketing bonanza. I apologize for asking this because it seems so off the wall, but does he have any control over this thunder that appears after the completion of each start? It seems to happen too often just to be a coincidence.”

“With Jason it is sometimes hard to draw emotion out of him, but based on our discussions the thunder after each of his starts is just as much a mystery to him. He has no idea why it happens.” Kevin remained silent on the voices. That Kevin would share with no one.

Arnold stared silently at the wall in the kitchen projecting the presentation. “Strange. Very strange. I have to admit this is the first time I have represented a player with as much mystery as Jason.”

“You don’t live with him and he is as much a mystery to me.”

With that the presentation had ended. Arnold gave Kevin three contracts to review. “Here is one for Shu if she has any interest in earning a little extra cash from endorsement deals. I don’t know her personality. She may prefer to stay out of the spotlight. That’s just the way some people are. So if she has no interest I’ll understand. Here is another for Jason and one for you. I don’t expect you to sign them today. You may want to make some changes to them after you’ve read the content. I also still have some more research to do on my end to confirm the attractiveness of your representation. Remember, once the wave crashes there is not much we can do to get you back on top of the next wave. We are not publicity agents. We are contract agents. I’ll get back in touch with you in the next couple of days to see what the contract looks like. If you are amenable to the percentages we can get the train rolling but we need to get it rolling quick. Does that sound reasonable to you?”

Kevin didn’t have a problem. “That sounds good to me.”

“Okay then, we will talk in a couple of days.”

Shu was shocked when Kevin told her she could earn money in China doing endorsement deals. He showed her the proposed contract. She did not want anything to do with endorsements or being put on public display. “One celebrity per family is enough.”

Jason did not want anything to do with reading his contract. “If you want to sign yours just let me know and I sign mine. I follow your judgment.”


Top Ten After Ten - Tigers

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

These are the top ten prospects from 2003 as rated by Baseball America.  Myworld provides a brief synopsis of the Tigers prospects major league careers or lack of it.

1. Jeremy Bonderman RHP - He was made famous in the book Moneyball after the Athletics drafted him in the first round leading to a chair thrown against the wall by GM Billy Beane. He was later traded to the Tigers where he had some good seasons until arm injuries did him in. After being out of the game for a couple years he has made a come back with the Seattle Mariners, fitting into their starting rotation. The Athletics would have been better off keeping Bonderman because they got nothing for him after the trade.

2. Preston Larrison RHP - A second round draft choice in 2001 never made it to the major leagues pitching as high as AAA.

3. Franklyn German RHP - Frankyn had a few spotty years of relief in the major leagues finishing with a career ERA of 4.25.

4. Omar Infante 2B - Omar turned into a nice utility player early in his career, later working his way into a starting role as a second baseman. Back with the Tigers after spending time with the Braves and Marlins.

5. Eric Munson 1B/3B - a highly touted first round pick in 1999 whose back injuries sapped his power. He and Eric Chavez played on the same San Diego high school baseball team that underperformed in their senior year. He had back to back seasons in 2003 and 2004 where he hit 18 and 19 homeruns but very little before or after that.

6. Scott Moore SS - the 2002 first round pick eventually moved to third base but his major league career was brief, lacking the power to play the position on a full time basis. He did hit 16 homeruns over 430 major league at bats over a number of years.

7. Nook Logan OF - The Tigers hoped he would be their centerfielder of the future but Curtis Granderson won that job. He admitted using HGH after an injury but it didn’t enhance his major league career. He played four seasons in the major leagues, two for the Washington Nationals. In the low minors he stole over 50 bases for two years, but was not that prolific at the higher levels. Nook stole 20 plus stolen bases in two of his four seasons, one with the Tigers and the other with the Nationals.

8. Rob Henkel LHP - Rob had no major league career.

9. Brent Clevlen OF - Journeyman fourth outfielder was recently released by the Arizona Diamondbacks. His last major league appearance was in 2010.

10. Anderson Hernandez SS - Anderson had a few years of success as a utility infielder, but never made it in a starting capacity. Currently a teammate of Alfredo Despaigne of the Campeche Pirates in the Mexican league.

Other Tiger prospects who had a significant impact in the major leagues.

12. Cody Ross OF - Overcame the label of being a fourth outfielder to win a starting outfield job with the Marlins. Signed a three year contract with the Diamondbacks. One of the rare breed of position players who bats righthanded and throws lefthanded.

15. Jack Hannahan 3B - Jack is currently a bench player for the Reds. He did earn significant starting time with the Indians in 2011 and 2012 but lacked the power teams want in their third baseman.

16. Andres Torres OF - He was once a top prospect whose star had fallen. After being out of the major leagues for four years won the Giants starting centerfield job in 2009. After a one year stint with the Mets he is back with the Giants in 2013.

18. Curtis Granderson OF - He won the Tigers starting centerfield job, eventually traded straight up to the Yankees for a young prospect Austin Jackson. His career is winding down with the Yankees but it has been a productive one with two 40 plus homerun seasons.

25. Ryan Raburn 3B - Turned into a mostly platoon player who played against lefthanded pitching. Currently with the Cleveland Indians fulfilling that same role. He is mainly an outfielder but can play some second base.

NR Don Kelly SS - Jim Leyland loves him. Not a starter but used at a number of positions as a utility player.

NR Fernando Rodney RHP - He had some up and down years as a closer, his 37 saves with the Tigers getting him a nice contract with the Angels. He bombed with the Angels as their closer signing as a discounted free agent with the Rays.  Last year with the Rays he had his best season with 48 saves. This year he is reverting back to his old form of inconsistency, but he did lead his WBC Dominican Republic team to the championship closing out each win.

2003 draft picks who made an impact in the major leagues

Their number one pick Kyle Sleeth never saw any kind of major league action.  He got as high as AA but Tommy John surgery put an end to his season.  This draft yielded no real major leaguers.