2021 Minor-league hitter top 10 rankings
The 2021 minor league season is over, so we thought now would be a good time to take a look at some of the best stats from hitters in the Detroit Tigers system.
You can certainly see for yourself at FanGraphs or Baseball Reference, but no one else is going to offer you handy packages of the top 10 performers in a variety of categories.
And just as a quick note, these lists are limited to qualified minor leaguers. That is, players who had enough record appearances in the minors to qualify for the hit title. This removes veterans like Renato Núñez, Isaac Paredes and Christin Stewart who would have been on lists but not played enough.
So let’s start with generating electricity because that’s the most fun. In both 2018 and 2019, the Detroit Tigers only had four qualified minor league players who scored 15 or more home runs. This year they had nine:
Detroit Tigers Minor League Home Run Guide
|Josh Lester||AA, AAA||109||32|
|Spencer Torkelson||A +, AA, AAA||121||30th|
|Riley Greene||AA, AAA||124||24|
|Ryan Kreidler||AA, AAA||129||22nd|
|Reynaldo Rivera placeholder image||A +||95||21|
|Clemens Codes||A, AAA||100||18th|
|Yariel Gonzalez||AA, AAA||92||17th|
|Daniel Cabrera||A +, AA||116||13th|
And there it is! Spencer Torkelson with a monster explosion in the center left for his 30th home run of the season. Ties the game too. pic.twitter.com/Jrxo5LvjYe
– Tigers Minor League report (@tigersMLreport) October 3, 2021
That’s a solid increase in power production over the past few years, and it offers some of the biggest prospects in the system. But it doesn’t necessarily tell the full story.
Let’s look at odds stats, rather than counting stats, to include some of the younger players in rookie leagues. We’ll go with you Isolated power supply, or ISO, that’s just the sluging percentage minus the batting average – we’re removing those pesky singles to see who really has the most extra base pop:
Detroit Tigers Minor League ISO executives
|Josh Lester||AA, AAA||109||.324|
|Spencer Torkelson||A +, AA, AAA||121||.285|
|Danuerys de la Cruz||complex||40||.260|
|Reynaldo Rivera placeholder image||A +||95||.241|
|Riley Greene||AA, AAA||124||.233|
|Clemens Codes||A, AAA||100||.213|
So the three best power hitters stay the same, but then things get interesting. Manuel Sequera was one of Detroit’s major international signings in the 2019 class but was overshadowed by number 9 on that list. Roberto Campos. Sequera led the Florida Complex League with 11 home runs and added 12 more doubles.
Danuerys de la Cruz is an unannounced international class catcher from 2018 who showed some promise in 2019 but broke out this year to lead the FCL in OPS (.975). Cristian SantanaHe was Detroit’s big 2020 international signing, meanwhile, and he ended up having a great season in the Dominican Summer League. He was second in the league with 9 home runs and his 161 WRC + were good for 4th place.
Detroit Tigers Minor League leads the table
Let’s take a look at another performance category. Doubles aren’t always talked about when it comes to generating electricity, but there’s an old saying in minor league baseball that doubles become homers as the players get older. So let’s look at this as a little power projection:
|Gage workers||A, A +||118||37|
|Spencer Torkelson||A +, AA, AAA||121||29|
|Riley Greene||AA, AAA||124||25th|
|Ryan Kreidler||AA, AAA||129||23|
|Eric De La Rosa||A, A +, AA||104||22nd|
|André Lipcius||A +, AA||116||22nd|
|Josh Lester||AA, AAA||109||22nd|
|Daniel Cabrera||A +, AA||116||21|
Here we see many of the usual suspects, but also a handful of interesting new names, led by Gage workerswho apparently circled the field. In fact, Workman’s 37 doubles were only a small gap on the overall lead in the minor league. Workman has also scored 12 homers and 6 triples this year. So if that old scouting adage is true, it wouldn’t be a huge shock to see him make 20 homers next season.
Eric De La Rosa and André Lipcius are two more interesting names here. De La Rosa is an excellent speed line drive machine that has made itself an interesting prospect this year, while Andre Lipcius is just a stable, solid baseball player who takes advantage of what pitchers give him.
On the next page we take a look at some more interesting offensive stats.