The Detroit Tigers took a gamble last offseason in the Rule 5 draft, and it has surely paid off in the 2021 season. They chose to bring in outfielder Akil Baddoo who has been tearing it up during his first season in the big leagues.
Things are moving in the right direction for the Detroit Tigers, and the breakout of Baddoo is one of the positives about this season. It’s not often that a player who is selected in the Rule 5 draft can step into a team’s lineup and have a direct impact.
It definitely happens, but for someone like Baddoo, it’s not as common. He’s a player who made quite the jump to the big leagues between the pandemic and his time with the Minnesota Twins organization where he was poached from.
If things were not to work out, the Tigers could return him to the Twins, but that would be a silly move, given that Baddoo is looking mighty good for the Tigers in his first season. A collision with Derek Hill led to some time on the Injured List (IL), but Baddoo has returned and is back in the lineup.
Detroit Tigers’ Akil Baddoo has been fun to watch in 2021.
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So far this year, Baddoo has played in 94 games for the Tigers, where he has logged 338 at-bats. He has slashed .262/.328/.459 with six triples, 10 home runs, and 45 RBI for the Tigers in his first time in the big leagues.
This is more than impressive for Baddoo, who has never played a game above High-A while with the Twins organization.
Not to mention, in 2020, Baddoo had a rough time as it was even without the pandemic.
An injury with his arm required surgery and the pandemic season was his recovery time. Baddoo recovered and has since returned to the field in 2021 after being selected in the Rule 5 draft.
Baddoo’s hot start on the big league scene was plenty of fun to watch for the Tigers faithful.
All-in-all, Baddoo has put together quite the 2021 season, which has been fun to watch and gathered support from Tigers fans. The fanbase even rallied enough to get number “60” Baddoo shirseys and jerseys available to buy.
As the season has played out, Baddoo has even been tossed into the Rookie of the Year conversation, which is quite an accomplishment in itself. Even if he is not to finish in the top three in voting, it’s quite a feat for Baddoo.
As the 2021 season continues on, expect Baddoo to continue providing entertainment for fans.