Detroit Tigers pitching prospect Alex Faedo to make MLB debut against Pittsburgh Pirates

Detroit Free Press

Detroit Tigers right-hander Alex Faedo is set for his MLB debut.

The 26-year-old will start for the Tigers in Game 2 of Wednesday’s straight nine-inning doubleheader against the Pittsburgh Pirates, with Game 2 scheduled to begin after Game 1.

Tuesday’s series opener was postponed due to rain.

“Compete,” Faedo said in March, when asked about his goals for 2022, “and whatever the team asks of me, I’m going to do that to the best of my ability. I’d love to have a full, healthy season.”

Faedo is the Tigers’ No. 16 prospect, according to MLB Pipeline. He is joining the team as the 27th player for the doubleheader, meaning he is not yet officially on the active roster.

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The organization drafted Faedo with the No. 18 overall pick in 2017, selecting him out of Florida during the season in which the Gators won the College World Series. He was named the CWS Most Outstanding Player.

By 2019, Faedo advanced to Double-A Erie.

He underwent Tommy John surgery in January 2021.

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“I learned a ton about myself,” Faedo said March 15, after tossing his first live batting practice in camp. “You don’t take things for granted. You never know. I was in here ’20, throwing in spring, feeling good. Next thing you know, I’m not throwing again until ’22. So, it’s like, enjoy it all and make the most out of everything you do.”

Faedo recovered from surgery during MLB’s lockout and pitched one game for the Tigers in this year’s spring training.

“We can see some promise on what the organization likes about him,” Tigers manager A.J. Hinch said March 15. “He’s got a long road to develop and continue to see if he can help us this year, but I was impressed today.”

The Tigers started his 2022 season in Low-A Lakeland, where he appeared in three games (one start) and posted a 2.53 ERA with three walks and 12 strikeouts in 10⅔ innings.

Faedo earned a promotion April 23 to Triple-A Toledo.

“Pretty driven guy,” Hinch said in March. “We’re really high on him. He’s a first-round pick for a reason. That goes without saying. I’m anxious to get him on the field. I just hope he doesn’t try to do too much too soon given the environment.”

He pitched his lone outing for the Mud Hens on April 27, dropping in five scoreless innings against the Omaha Storm Chasers, an affiliate of the Kansas City Royals. He allowed four hits and struck out eight batters without conceding a walk.

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Faedo threw 69 pitches (49 strikes), with his fastball averaging around 93 mph and maxing out around 95 mph. He primarily throws a sinker, slider and four-seam fastball.

His slider is the most dominant pitch in his arsenal.

“I feel the most comfortable with all three pitches than I ever have,” Faedo said in March. “I feel great. I’m sure that’ll be a conversation with Fett (pitching coach Chris Fetter), like what he wants me to do. I trust him a ton. He’s really knowledgeable. Once we start working together, I’ll know more.”

On Wednesday against the Pirates, Faedo will get to test himself on baseball’s highest level.

Robbie Grossman healthy

Before Tuesday’s postponement, Hinch released his starting lineup for the two-game series opener against the Pirates. Robbie Grossman was the leadoff hitter and left fielder.

The 32-year-old suffered a right hand contusion in Sunday’s series finale against the Los Angeles Dodgers. He was hit in the hand by Walker Buehler’s 92.8 mph cutter in the second inning.

Grossman exited the game.

“Preliminary X-rays are negative for a fracture,” Tigers manager A.J. Hinch said after Sunday’s 6-3 loss. “That’s a good sign.”

Contact Evan Petzold at epetzold@freepress.com or follow him on Twitter @EvanPetzold. Read more on the Detroit Tigers and sign up for our Tigers newsletter.

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