With the pick ninth overall pick in the 2016 draft, the Tigers have selected right-handed pitcher Matt Manning from Sheldon High School in Sacramento, Calif. MLB.com had him high on their mock draft at ninth overall to the Tigers. Meanwhile, ESPN had Manning projected to go 15th overall, while Baseball America had him going at 29th.
Manning is the latest pitcher to join the Tigers' system in the last year, joining trade acquisitions Michael Fulmer, Daniel Norris, and Matt Boyd as well as draftee Beau Burrows. Detroit is preparing for the departures of some of its veteran starters, and has been loading up on young arms over the last two years.
The 6’6" 185 lbs pitcher is a two-sport star, playing both baseball and basketball and even starting the baseball season late because of basketball, according to MLB.com’s draft video. Nevertheless, he made eight appearances, all of them starts, and finished the season with a 1.91 ERA.
Manning, a Loyola Marymount University commit, can touch 96-97 MPH on the fastball, while also throwing a curveball and a changeup. According to MLB.com draft video, Manning has a good feel for his changeup.
Prior to the draft, Manning was ranked 25th on Baseball America’s Top 100 Draft Prospects List while MLB.com’s top 200 draft prospects list had him ranked at 25th.