For the last five years, the Detroit Tigers' farm system has ranked in the bottom third among all organizations. It’s not that they’ve struggled to develop prospects; rather, they’ve traditionally opted to trade them for big league talent, which has worked out well thus far.
While the Tigers' system still lacks overall depth, they do boast a trio of prospects that should be big-league ready at some point during the 2013 season. Their consensus top prospect, outfielder Nick Castellanos, is fresh off a breakout season in which he batted .405 for High-A Lakeland as a 20-year-old, and spent the second half of the season at Double-A Erie.
Similarly, outfielder Avisail Garcia, 21, began last season at Lakeland with Castellanos, but finished the year on the Tigers' postseason roster. Not to be forgotten is hard-throwing Bruce Rondon, who has the potential to break camp as the team’s closer.
The Tigers have also relied heavily on their international scouting department, which is responsible for nearly half of their top 10 prospects. And although they didn’t draft until the second round last year as a result of signing Prince Fielder during the offseason, they did net two top-10 prospects in Jake Thompson and Austin Schotts.
Here's a look at the Detroit Tigers' top 10 prospects headed into spring training.