The full circle has been completed with the Detroit Tigers and outfielder Cameron Maybin.
On June 7, 2005, Maybin was drafted as the 10th overall pick in the 2005 MLB Draft by the Tigers. On December 4, 2007, he was traded in a package of five players to the Florida Marlins for Miguel Cabrera, who stills wears the Old English D. After being traded around, Maybin found himself with the Atlanta Braves in 2015. On November 20, 2015, Maybin has returned to the Motor City.
The Tigers have acquired Maybin and cash considerations from the Braves for left-handed pitcher Ian Krol and left-handed pitcher Gabe Speier, the team announced.
“Cameron Maybin is a good outfielder with plenty of experience in center field,” Tigers general manager Al Avila said in a statement. “He is coming off of a solid offensive season in 2015 and brings speed and athleticism to our club. Brad Ausmus and the coaching staff will determine Cameron’s role during spring training.”
Maybin, then 20 years old, played 24 games for the Tigers in 2007 before being traded to the Marlins for Cabrera. He hit a horrible .143/.208/.265 with one home run, two RBI and five stolen bases. During 2008-2010 with the Marlins, Maybin turned himself into a half-decent hitter with a promising glove, but the center fielder was still waiting for his talent that so many scouts promised. Over those three seasons in Florida, he hit .257 with 12 home runs and 43 RBI 144 games. He was never able to get a starting job, which did not allow his full potential to unleash.
As a 24-year-old in 2011, the talent started to roll around for Maybin, as he finally got a starting job at the Major League level with the San Diego Padres. He found himself with the Padres after being dealt by the Marlins. In the first two seasons with the Padres, Maybin hit .253 with 17 home runs and 85 RBI over 284 games. The center fielder, however, was injured in 2013 and only played 14 games. The injury did not allow him to get much of an opportunity in 2014, which prompted a trade to the Braves.
With Atlanta in 2015, Maybin played in 141 games, slashed .267/.327/.370 with a career-high 10 home runs and a career-high 59 RBI. He will look to add to his career-best season with the Tigers in 2016.
The Tigers traded for Maybin, 28, because the potential they saw before the 2005 MLB Draft, which finally came round, 11 years later. He will have a chance to earn the starting job in center field, but will have to beat out 25-year-old Anthony Gose. It will be up to manager Brad Ausmus and the coaching staff to figure which player will start on Opening Day.
As for Krol and Speier, both are left-handers, but are in different career situations.
Krol, 24, was up-and-down between Triple-A Toledo and the Tigers over the 2015 season. During his 28 games pitched at the Major League level last season, Krol went 2-3 with a 5.79 ERA.
Speier, 20, played for Class-A West Michigan last season and owned a 4-2 record with a 2.86 ERA in 33 games.