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The Detroit Tigers are in the midst of a rebuild that has the fanbase looking towards the future. Pitching has become one of the strengths of the team’s farm system, with arms like Matt Manning and Casey Mize giving Tigers fans hope for the future. Manning was named to the MLB Futures Game, and Mize is regarded as the best pitching prospect in all of baseball. Despite the hype these two are generating, there’s another arm in Double A Erie that is worth keeping an eye on.
Tarik Skubal has been a strikeout machine since being called up to Erie on July 5th. The southpaw has struck out 34 batters in three games in Double A, including a 13 strikeout performance on July 19th. Throughout his professional career, Skubal has recorded 164 strikeouts while walking just 27 batters in 118.2 innings. The former ninth round pick has found his form after undergoing Tommy John Surgery in college with Seattle University.
Skubal possesses a fastball that usually averages 92-95 MPH, but has flirted with 97 MPH in Double A. He mixes in an above average curveball and an average slider. Skubal also uses a changeup, but he rarely threw it in college. He shows a lot of confidence on the mound, and Detroit’s higher-ups have been impressed with the composure he possesses. Skubal is showing that he can get batters to swing through his pitches, as all most all of his strikeouts are swinging strikeouts.
Skubal currently sits at #17 on MLB Pipeline’s ranking of Detroit’s Top 30 prospects. This should change after the season if we see if Skubal finish strong. His stock is quickly rising, however, and he looks to be a potential front end rotation arm if his performance remains consistent. Time will tell if Skubal is the next star in the Detroit organization.
Featured Image: Erie SeaWolves via Twitter