Brad Barr-USA TODAY Sports
Matt Tuiasosopo is a prospect no more.
At least for now, the Tigers' biggest surprise during spring training is on the major league roster and will get an opportunity to prove himself.
The Tigers reportedly attempted to acquire the utility player for the stretch run last year but couldn't pull the trigger.
Tigers general manager Dave Dombrowski said Thursday that the Tigers pursued Tuiasosopo late last season when they decided they needed a right-handed hitter but traded for Jeff Baker instead.
"We tried to get him, and we couldn't acquire him," Dombrowski said to MLive.com. "He was one of the guys at the top of our list for this role on our team."
The 26-year-old third round Amateur Draft pick of the Seattle Mariners in 2004 didn't join the Tigers last season, but he signed with Detroit as a free agent in November and made the most of his opportunity to make the big club.
Tuiasosopo batted .286 this spring, but when it was determined he would make the Opening Day roster, he was hitting .327 (16-for-49) with six doubles, four home runs, 10 RBIs and a 1.105 OPS.
He's listed as shortstop for the Tigers, but he played three different positions in 30 games this spring and only committed one error in 93 total chances.
Tuiasosopo only has a .176 average with five home runs and 15 RBI's in 71 career major league games, but he can play several positions and should serve as a quality utility player with some pop for the Tigers this season.