The Detroit Tigers acquired left-handed starting pitcher Joey Wentz in the trade that sent former closer Shane Greene to the Atlanta Braves. That is the same deal that brought former outfielder Travis Demeritte over to the organization as well.
Since the day, Wentz has not quite made it to Comerica Park to play for the Detroit Tigers. However, the 23-year-old southpaw is now ranked as the organization’s sixth-best prospect according to MLB dot com‘s rankings.
It has not been an easy road at all; injuries have put quite the damper on things for Wentz, who has had a fair share of ailments. It has been 15 months since Wentz had Tommy John Surgery, and he was finally activated from the injured list.
His activation comes with a promotion and bump up to the Double-A Erie Seawolves, where he will continue looking to get back on track. The left-hander is a good one who could very well make it to the big leagues to round out one heck of a rotation that is being pieced together for the future.
Detroit Tigers prospect Joey Wentz is the next southpaw who is going to prove himself with this organization.
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Wentz may not profile out as the big three do, but he is still a great arm who has stuff that plays and should continue to play at the big league level.
He is not going to be an overpowering lefty but rather a crafty lefty who changes speed and uses movement to miss barrels.
He showcases a fastball/changeup combination with a breaker to go with that.
The fastball changeup combination is personally one of my favorites to see; if he can iron out the breaking ball to be a big-breaking pitch that he can throw for strikes and command well, he can become a quality three-pitch mix guy.
As he returns from injury, he is going to be moved through the farm system cautiously as he continues working to iron things back out and ramp back up.
Once he is considered back to the same level or close to it, do not be surprised if he is pushed to develop quickly to get him into the big leagues for a trial.
His rehab with the Lakeland Flying Tigers was not great, but that should not be held against him. In five starts, Wentz totaled 18.2 innings pitched where he walked eight, surrendered 23 hits, and carried with him a 6.75 ERA and 1.66 WHIP.
They were rehab starts for a reason; not every pitcher is going to go into rehab starts and carve hitters up left and right. He will iron things out and be just fine. Expect the southpaw to get back on track and continue developing towards being that back of the rotation arm.
The Detroit Tigers should still be planning on Joey Wentz to help fill out their future rotation.