Detroit Tigers prospect Alex Faedo, first-round pick in 2017, set to make MLB debut vs. Pirates

Faedo to start second game of Wednesday’s doubleheader

Detroit Tigers relief pitcher Alex Faedo throws during a spring training baseball game against the New York Yankees, Thursday, March 5, 2020, in Lakeland, Fla. (Carlos Osorio, The Associated Press 2020)

DETROITDetroit Tigers starting pitching prospect Alex Faedo, the team’s first-round pick in 2017, will make his MLB debut Wednesday against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

After Tuesday night’s matchup with the Pirates was postponed due to weather, the Tigers announced Faedo will start the second game of Wednesday’s doubleheader. He’s being placed on the roster as the 27th man, an addition teams are allowed to make for doubleheaders.

Faedo was the No. 18 overall pick by the Tigers in the 2017 draft after he polished off a dominant three-year career at Florida. In his final college season, Faedo posted a 2.26 ERA, a 1.108 WHIP and struck out 11.4 batters per nine innings.

There have been some professional growing pains along the way for the now-26-year-old righty. Faedo struck out just 8.2 batters per nine innings across High-A and Double-A in 2018 and posted a 4.95 ERA in 12 starts with the latter.

Then, in 2019, Faedo got back on track with a 3.90 ERA and 10.5 strikeouts per nine innings across 22 Double-A starts, only to see his next two seasons erased by the COVID pandemic and Tommy John surgery, respectively.

The 2020 minor-league season was canceled entirely due to the pandemic, and Faedo’s surgery was announced the ensuing December.

Coming into 2022, the one-time top 100 prospect hadn’t stepped on a professional mound since Sept. 1, 2019.

So far, Faedo’s return has been a success. He struck out 12 batters across 10.2 innings during a tune-up in Lakeland before getting promoted to Triple-A Toledo for the first time in his career.

In his only start with the Mud Hens (April 27), he struck out eight batters across five scoreless innings. Faedo allowed just four hits and no walks while inducing 17 swinging strikes on 69 pitches.

That’s about as good as it gets.

On Wednesday, he’ll be asked to handle a Pittsburgh Pirates lineup that ranks 24th in MLB in runs scored and 23rd in OPS. The Pirates have hit just 12 home runs and 27 doubles this season -- both third-lowest in the league.

About the Author:

Derick is the Lead Digital Editor for ClickOnDetroit and has been with Local 4 News since April 2013. Derick specializes in breaking news, crime and local sports.