Selected by the Tigers in the 10th round of the 2008 Draft, Robbie Weinhardt was a name that perhaps went unnoticed by many. The 6′ 2″ right hander from Oklahoma State University has remained under the radar thus far for the most part. Despite being under the radar Robbie continues to develop his game and dominate proving that hes one of Detroits top pitching prospects.
During his first full season in Lakeland this season he was untouchable. Weinhardt posted a 0.85ERA through 31 2/3 innings. Opposing batters were puzzled by his stuff and hit just .200 against him. Perhaps most impressive, is during that span he struck out 40 and walked only 10. His ability to miss bats and avoid walks earned him the closer role in Lakeland. His performance there earned him a promotion to AA Erie recently. Though Weinhardt has logged only five innings since the promotion to Erie, he has remained solid. Batters are hitting a meek .167 against him and he has racked up six strikeouts. As for his ERA, it’s still early to judge but it’s solid at 1.80 right now.
A franchise once plagued by a terrible bullpen year after year now looks to have a plethora of talented young relievers. We have already witnessed a sample of what prospect Ryan Perry can offer. Other prospects such as Satterwhite, Green and Jacobson round out an impressive core of arms for the future bullpen. With numbers like these though, I think it’s safe to say that even the “casual tiger fan” will soon become more familiarwith Robbie Weinhardt. One thing is certain, I enjoyed watching greatness in it’s infant stages while he was down here in Lakeland and I expect big things from him.