Detroit's 2009 Draftees Already Impressing in Minors

Johnny LawrenceCorrespondent IAugust 18, 2009

Detroit harvested a talented crop of players in June's amateur draft, finally inking several of their highest picks yesterday.

Jacob Turner (first-round), Andrew Oliver (second-round) and Daniel Fields (sixth-round) agreed to generous contracts before Monday's midnight deadline.

Overall, the Tigers signed nine of their top 10 selections, with eighth-round Baylor pitcher Craig Fristch being the only exception.

But many of Detroit's lower round picks signed compacts in June and have been thriving in the minor leagues since.

Here are a few standout performers from Detroit's 2009 class:

C: John Murrian, Oneonta (Round 9)

Perhaps the most productive 2009 Tiger draftee thus far, the former Winthrop University catcher is raking in Single-A Oneonta. His arrival couldn't have come at a better time—Detroit thirsts for high ceiling catching prospects.

141 AB, 47 H, 4 HR, 32 RBI, 2 SB, .333 AVG, .395 OBP.

SP: Adam Wilk, West Michigan (Round 11)

Already documented in the Keep An Eye On section of the Detroit Tigers Dissector, Wilk has experienced a Justin Verlander-like run of success early in his professional career. Verlander yielded a remarkable output his first step in the minors: 13 GS, 9-2, 86 IP, 70 H, 19 BB, 104 K, 1.67 ERA.

11 GS, 4-1, 61 IP, 39 H, 7 BB, 53 K, 1.48 ERA.

Expect to hear much more from this left-handed rotation prospect.

OF: Michael Rockett, Oneonta (Round 13)

Second to Murrian in batting average at Oneonta, Rockett is a tough out. The four-year college player from Texas-San Antonio could project as an extra Tigers outfielder a short way down the road.

210 AB, 65 H, 4 3B, 3 HR, 26 RBI, 2 SB, 33 K, .310 AVG.

SP/RP: Kevan Hess, Oneonta (Round 14)

Born in Kalamazoo, MI, the Western Michigan University righty skipped his senior year in the Mid-American Conference to enter the draft. Joining his older brother in the organization (Andrew Hess, 19th round, 2007), he throws a 94 mph fastball.

15 G, 2-0, 32.2 IP, 29 K, 3.31 ERA.

RP: Kenny Faulk, Oneonta
(Round 16)

Like Wilk, Faulk is another left-handed prospect that has excelled early on. A deceptive 93 mph fastball earned the former Kennesaw State University pitcher the closer's role in Oneonta and Detroit has tagged him a relief pitcher to look out for.

20 G, 2-1, 23 IP, 24 K, 8 SV, 3.13 ERA.

1B/3B: Rawley Bishop, Oneonta (Round 19)

Bishop, the oldest player drafted by Detroit, earned a spot in the 2009 New York-Penn League All-Star Game. More developed than most of his peers, the 23-year-old has stood out in a league of high school and college-aged kids.

199 AB, 60 H, 5 HR, 37 RBI, .302 AVG, .388 OBP.

SP/RP: Cory Hamilton, Oneonta (Round 23)

Hamilton might be overachieving in his first professional season, but the righty has proved to be an effective rotation and bullpen piece so far. Competing in the powerful Big West Conference at UC-Irvine certainly prepared him for a higher level of play.

12 G, 3-4, 34.2 IP, 21 K, 2.86 ERA