the 2011 litter of Tiger cubs


draft day cuddle by Samara Pearlstein

The Big Cats lost today, which means it’s the perfect time for the draft post! I could pretend to know things about these prospects, and issue paragraphs of my flimsily-constructed opinions couched in authoritative language, citing my Baseball Blogger Expertise, but who are we kidding? I draw bad cartoons, and I have not seen these kids play one minute of live baseball. Let us play to our strengths and note pointless things, and where there are no pointless things to note, we can just make some stuff up.

James McCann
76th overall (2nd round), catcher, righty, 6’2, turning 21 in less than a week, University of Arkansas

I got all excited to see we had taken a catcher named McCann, until it became clear that he was not a secret Brian McCann brother or anything. DISAPPOINTING. But look at his hair on his college profile page! I don’t know what is going on there, but it’s got to be some sort of intangible, right? So long as his hair remains awful and inscrutable, he should move through the system quickly, although he and all other catchers will be blocked by Savior Avila for years to come.

Aaron Westlake
106th overall (3rd round), 1B, bats lefty/throws righty, 6’4, 22 years old, Vanderbilt

HE HAS THE EXACT SAME BIRTHDAY AS RICK PORCELLO. December 27, 1988. THEY WERE MEANT TO BE TOGETHER. For that reason, expect to see this kid up early, although it may not necessarily be as a first baseman. He can probably play left field or something if we ask nicely.

Jason King
137th overall (4th round), 3B, bats switch/throws righty, 6’0, turning 22 in less than a week, Kansas State University

His father played baseball at Ohio State, and his grandfather played football at Ohio State (under Woody Hayes). This kid cannot be trusted. We should trade him to the Royals soon, since that is clearly where he nomenclaturely belongs anyways.

Brandon Loy
167th overall (5th round), SS, righty, 6’0, 21 years old, University of Texas

Longhorn baseball is freaking terrifying. This is a kid who grew up in Texas, went to high school in Texas, and then played three years of college baseball at BIG TEXAS (since he’s a junior). We’re talking about critical levels of Texanacity here. This might be a problem for some organizations, but Dave Dombrowski dealt with Josh Beckett when he was just a wee raw Texan lad coming up through the Marlins system, so I expect we are fully primed to deal with the Texan situation.

Tyler Collins
197th overall (6th round), OF, righty, 5’11, 21 years old, Howard College (?)

The MLB draft board lists him as coming out of Howard, but he definitely played his freshman year (the 2010 season) at Baylor, so I guess he transferred. Howard College is some kind of junior college thing. In Texas. Their school sports are baseball, softball, men’s and women’s basketball, cheerleading, and rodeo. Not even kidding. Anyways, this kid went from an actual school with a Big 12 NCAA division 1 baseball squad to a juco that has an official rodeo team. Maybe he is hungry for revenge against the world… that’s our best hope.

Brian Flynn
227th overall (7th round), LHP, 6’8, 21 years old, Wichita State University

He joins Nate Robertson and Andy Dirks as Tiger Shockers. He’s an enormous beast of a left-handed pitcher, that seems to be all you need to know.

Jason Krizan
257th overall (8th round), RF, bats lefty/throws righty, 6’0, turns 22 at the end of this month, Dallas Baptist University

Apparently he played in the NECBL back in the summer of 2008, which seems forever ago when talking about these kittens, but it endears him to me because the NECBL are my local boys. He wasn’t on my local team, though. Whatever. GO NAVIGATORS.

Chad Wright
287th overall (9th round), CF, bats lefty/throws righty, 5’10, turns 22 next month, University of Kentucky

The draft tracker does not list a weight for him. I suspect that he is able to project his mass into another dimension using the power of his mind, possibly aided by aluminum bats.

Curt(is) Casali
317th overall (10th round), C, righty, 6’2, 22 years old, Vanderbilt

2011 was his 4th season playing for Vanderbilt, so he should be able to actually graduate college, unlike most of these goobers. According to their website, he’s majoring in ‘corporate communications’, which is a thing, I guess? He also likes Third Eye Blind. Don’t blame me, blame the website.

Rodger Green
347th overall (11th round), 1B, bats lefty/throws righty, 6’4, turns 22 at the end of this month, Barry University

What the hell is Barry University?

Jeff Holm
377th overall (12th round), OF, lefty, 6’3, 22 years old, Michigan State

Apparently we’ve stooped to taking Spartans now. I know, I know: it’s distasteful. But I am sure Mr. Dombrowski has done his research, and he must have reason to believe that four years in East Lansing hasn’t warped this kid too much. Let’s all do our very best to give him the benefit of the doubt. At least he should be semi-literate… he’s not a Buckeye, after all.

Ryan Woolley
407th overall (13th round), RHP, 6’1, 23 years old, University of Alabama Birmingham

He actually played his first two seasons at UGA, sat out 2009 because of his transfer to UAB, then busted out onto the Conference USA scene. C-USA, yeeeeeaaaahhhh, dig it. He didn’t overlap with Savior Avila, and they would have been on different campuses even if he had.

Patrick Smith
437th overall (14th round), CF, lefty, 6’0, 19 years old, Middle Georgia College

Now we’re getting into the really young kittens. Like, this kid won’t even be 20 until October. In a normal draft that might not seem so young, but the Tigers had a very college-heavy and therefore very old draft this year, so 19 years old is like EGADS, don’t take him away from the momma cat yet!

At this point I realized I was writing words about the 14th round of the draft, so I’m cutting it off here, except to note the Nepotism Picks:

Colin Kaline, Al Kaline’s grandson, 797th, 2B, switch hitter, 22 years old, Florida Southern

Nick Avila, the Savior’s cousin, 1127th, RHP, 22 years old, Nova Southeastern University. I would have never guessed he was only 22 judging from his roster photo.

Blaise Salter, Bill Freehan’s grandson (!!), 1157th, C, righty, 17 years old, St. Mary’s Prep (Orchard Lake Village, MI). He’s committed to Michigan State.

Andrew Allen, Rod Allen’s son, 1367th, 1B, righty, 21 years old, Cal State LA. Behold. Note also that he is listed at 6’4, 230 lbs, so he’s a fairly, ahem, big boy. Rod must be so proud.

Brett Impemba, Mario Impemba’s son, 1487th, OF, bats lefty/throws righty, 17 years old, Dakota High School (Macomb Township). Rod and Mario were talking about how they were inextricably linked together now that their kids had been taken by the Tigers in the same draft class. Linked together FOREVER.

11 responses to “the 2011 litter of Tiger cubs

  1. In defense of Curt Casali: What the hell is wrong with 3EB?

    Also, this writeup was far more interesting then staring at BA scouting reports for eight hours straight. Amusing as usual.

  2. jonathan melman

    Hi. I have been reading your blog now for about a year.. Time for me to say HI! and thanks for your exellent insights, clever wit. amazing artistic abilities,,, and your general-all -around cleverness…. I live in Boston as well…. and have been in love with the TIgers since 1966, when I was 10 yrs old…..
    Please keep up the excellent work….

    melmanchiro

  3. I love that Dombrowski is frolicking with his new tiger cubs– in a striped shirt.

  4. Colin Kaline? Awesome.

  5. I am overwhelmed by the sheer stripey-ness of this cartoon!

    I wonder if Rod goes on and on about how big his kid’s thighs are. Just a thought.

  6. If Green majored in communications at Barry University, I can just imagine them teaching him how to sound like Barry White.

    I see the Avila beard-growing power runs in the family.

    Is Andrew Allen “country strong”?

  7. I love how the Mothership has taken a page from your book and has been giving us the continuing adventures of Toy Scherzer this week!

  8. Hey now a sparty is infinetly better than a sweatervested cheat school student. I dont see any wolverines becoming tiger cubs!!! ;-)

  9. I wonder if Rod fed his kid specifically so he’d grow up big, or if he likes big boys because his kid is big… which came first, the chicken or the egg, the Rod Allen body type obsession or the son who embodies it??

  10. Barry University is a small private college in South Florida. Pretty much a joke. I had no clue they had any athletic programs.

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