MLB Draft: Detroit Tigers Squeeze Value Out of First Round Picks

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Mar 4, 2015; Peoria, AZ, USA; San Diego Padres center fielder Cameron Maybin (24) warms up before facing the Seattle Mariners in a spring training baseball game at Peoria Sports Complex. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

2005 MLB Draft

Cameron Maybin, OF – T.C. Roberson High School

Speaking of the Miguel Cabrera trade, Cameron Maybin was the other big chip the Tigers spent to make that deal work.

Drafted with the 10th overall pick, Maybin quickly hit his way through the minor leagues and made it to the major leagues in just his second full season of professional baseball. He appeared to be the full package: gold glove potential in center field, speed, and the ability to hit for power and average. The first home run of his career came in his second game — off of Roger Clemens.

It was difficult for the Tigers to part with such potential, but they wanted to build an immediate winner and opted for Willis and Cabrera over the long-term potential of Miller and Maybin.

Maybin was able to parlay his tools into a now 9-year major league career, but he hasn’t blossomed into the star many thought he could be. He just turned 28 years old at the start of the season — so he still has some youth on his side — but team control has long since run out and he’s only played in 100 MLB games in a season twice (in nine years).

Teams would love to hit on all of their first round picks, but you’d gladly give up the potential of two such players in order to gain a player like Cabrera. That trade was a slam dunk for the Tigers.

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