Merely hours after Baseball America released their top 10 Detroit Tigers prospects, it was already out dated. Devon Travis topped BA’s list of Tigers prospects, but late Wednesday night he was dealt to the Toronto Blue Jays for Anthony Gose.
Travis is a true second baseman who was blocked by Ian Kinsler, making his future with the Tigers a question anyway. Travis has played 257 minor league games since being drafted in the 13th round of the 2012 draft out of Florida State University, and has shown his excellent hit tool throughout. He has hit .323 thus far in his minor league career, which is inflated some due to an incredible 2013 season where he his .351 over two levels. In 2014, Travis spent the whole season in Double-A where his hit .298 and showed some power with 10 home runs and 20 doubles. He has above average speed and stole 22 and 16 bags the past two years.
Defensively, Travis has a good arm for the position and can hold his own with the glove. In 2014 the Blue Jays saw Brett Lawrie shift to second base for a while after the rotating door of Ryan Goins, Munenori Kawasaki, and Maicer Izturis proved to be less than an ideal situation. Travis should have every chance to earn the starting job in Toronto out of camp, and it wouldn’t be a shock if he does.
In centerfield, Dalton Pompey showed he is the guy not only for the future, but potentially for the here and now as well, leaving Gose without a position. After dealing Austin Jackson in the David Price trade, the Tigers started Ezequiel Carrera quite a bit in center field, who is far from an everyday starter. Gose fills a definite need for the Tigers, although he has not proven he can hit enough to hold down a starting gig. In 202 big league games, Gose has hit just .234, but he has stolen 34 bags in that time. Gose brings most of his value with his plus defensive skills, which when taken into account Jose Iglesias expected back from injury to play short and Ian Kinsler at second base, the Tigers could have one of the best up-the-middle defenses in baseball for 2015.