The Detroit Tigers have not had a winning record since the 2016 MLB season. In addition to that, the club has not made the postseason since the 2014 season.
There hasn’t been much for Tiger fans to cheer for in general the past decade. With such mediocre performances one can not help wonder why the team has stalled the development of a young and promising player MLBbro Akil Baddoo.
Baddoo played in 124 and 73 games in the 2021 and 2022 seasons respectively. While his strikeout numbers have been higher than the organization would like, he’s exhibited promising defense and shows obvious improvements the more he plays at the Major League level.
After a dominant Spring Training in 2022, the MLBbro outfielder seemed poised for a breakout of sorts, especially after a successful rookie season in which he batted .259 with 13 Home Runs and 55 RBI.
But, while he did struggle mightily during his Major League tenure last season, the Tigers were in no position to contend. Thus, sending him down to Triple-A did nothing but halt his development.
Baddoo has batted over .300 in his last two Minor League stints, proving that he is Major League ready but needs more time to adjust. The Tigers are no threat to compete in the American League Central, and should be focused on developing young stars such as the MLBbro Baddoo.
Baddoo has all the tools to be a quality outfielder, and a threat at the plate. This was on display Wednesday when the MLBbro tallied two doubles against the Milwaukee Brewers in a 6-2 loss.
While his early 2023 batting average is in the low .200s, the Tigers should give him time to get fully acclimated to Major League pitching, and evaluate him thoroughly. Let’s hope that he not only gets a fair chance this year, but he continues to develop and emerge as another solid MLBbro.
It’s been an interesting 2022 season for Detroit Tigers outfielder Akil Baddoo. Last season, he gained a lot of attention as a rookie and quickly established a name for himself. But this season has not gone the way he and the Tigers intended.
Baddoo has spent time playing in the minors and with the big-league team this season and he has also dealt with a fair share of injuries, forcing him to miss some time.
This season he’s only hitting .194 through 64 games. A big difference from his numbers last year. Even though he has not produced much in his second year, Baddoo is still a talented ball player. Let’s not forget what he did as a rookie. Last season, he appeared in 124 games and hit .259 with 13 home runs, 55 RBI, and 18 stolen bases. This brother was the talk of the town in the Motor City and quickly became a fan favorite. Baddoo had high hopes coming into the season. After having so much success his rookie season, he was for sure in the running to be one of the starters in the outfield.
And at the start of the season, he was implemented into the starting lineup. He did not have a strong start offensively. At the end of April, he was hitting .111 in 36 at-bats. Not the start that you want to have. In May he was sent down to Triple-A and he impressed a lot of people down there in Toledo, proving that he was too good for that level.
“You have always got to make the best out of it,” Baddoo told reporters after his demotion. “It’s unfortunate. I’m going to go down there and get the reps that I need and be ready to come back.”
Baddoo spent over a month in the minors and in 30 games with Toledo he hit .300 with three home runs and 15 RBI. It seemed as if being sent down was exactly what Baddoo needed at the time. He looked way more comfortable at the plate during his time with Toledo and it looked as though he was regaining some of that confidence in the batter’s box as well.
He was called up and joined the Tigers back in July and collected two hits in his first game back since he was demoted. In August he had a lot more production at the plate. He had a three-game hit streak to start the month off and he had a few multi-hit games in there as well. The big thing about Baddoo is going to be consistency. Can the brother continue to have success throughout his career?
If he can do that, then he can become a star in this league, without a doubt. This will be a key offseason for the 24-year-old, and he’ll definitely look to have a bounce back season next year.
Last season “Baddoo Mania” was the hottest thing since sliced bread, as he had one of the greatest beginnings to a career in Major League history. However, after a slow start in his sophomore season, Baddoo was sent down to Triple-A Toledo this past weekend.
Akil Baddoo was a 22 year old Rule 5 Draft pick who had never played above A-ball. He then hit 5 home runs and had an OPS over 1.200 in Spring Training to make the Tigers' Opening Day Roster
Akil Baddoo electrified the city of Detroit from the first plate appearance of his career. He hit a home run on the first ever swing in his Major League career. The coming out party would not end there.
Baddoo became the only player in the history of modern baseball with a home run, grand slam, and walk-off hit within the first three games of his career. Although he did not receive any votes for American League Rookie of the Year, Baddoo finished 2021 with a .259 average, 13 home runs, 18 steals, 55 RBI and 20 doubles.
The Tigers missed the playoffs after finishing 16 games behind the White Sox, but showed plenty of promise as their record was near .500 – in large part to Baddoo, who appeared in 124 games for the team.
During the off-season, the Tigers made a few new additions and called up some of their top Minor League talent. There was hope in Mo-Town the team could be ahead of schedule; competing for a playoff spot in 2022 with Baddoo as one of their main pieces.
He got off to a similar hot start in Spring Training this season – which was where he earned his spot on the Big League club, after never playing higher than A-Ball in his career previously.
However this season, Baddoo is going through the dreaded “sophomore slump” some second-year athletes experience.
Baddoo only had seven hits in 50 plate appearances this season leading up to his demotion. His average only reached .140 and his on-base percentage was a woeful .218. He has one home run and two RBI.
“You have always got to make the best out of it,” Baddoo told reporters Monday after his demotion. “It’s unfortunate. I’m going to go down there and get the reps that I need and be ready to come back.”
Detroit Tigers manager A.J. Hinch says Baddoo was sent down in order to work on his swing and get constant at-bats rather than be in a platoon.
“This was unexpected when we started the year,” said Hinch. “I’m sure he didn’t expect it. We didn’t expect it. But the reality is this is where we are at. We need him to decompress and get himself right and play everyday. It could be a short stint, it could be longer, but hopefully he can work on things to be more consistent.”
The Tigers want Baddoo to become more of a contact hitter and swing less for power. He struck out in nearly 30 percent of his at-bats this season and for a player of his caliber of talent, those numbers are not acceptable. I believe Baddoo will be one of the best players on the Tigers, sooner rather than later, but this demotion will be an important crossroads on where he can take his career.
For now, outfielder Derek Hill will take the majority of reps in center during Baddoo’s absence.
MLBbro.com covered Black and brown players for 162 games and the playoffs in 2021. Some of these MLBbros have performed with a passion and power that has earned them nicknames that immediately identify them to the MLB community.
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Malik Wright is here with the #HIGH5 MLBbro Nicknames For 2021