The 25-year-old Crosby has been on the shelf since mid-May, which is hardly a new sensation for the left-hander. Both Baseball America and Baseball Prospectus considered the southpaw to be among the game’s Top 50 prospects following a dominant 2009 campaign at Class A (2.41 ERA, 117 strikeouts in 104 2/3 innings), but injuries and command problems have caused his prospect star to dim considerably since that time.
Crosby had Tommy John surgery in 2008, has battled shoulder problems in recent seasons and also underwent elbow surgery to remove loose bodies last August. In total he’s appeared in just 74 minor league games over the past five seasons. Baseball America at various times noted that Crosby had the best fastball and best curveball in the Tigers’ system, and the publication still ranked him as Detroit’s No. 17 prospect after the 2013 campaign. He shifted the bullpen this year, but his injuries and inability to command the strike zone have halted a once-promising career for Crosby, who will now look to latch on with another organization.
The 30-year-old Whelan has had a dominant season with Triple-A Toledo this season, notching a 1.85 ERA with 11.1 K/9 and 3.7 BB/9 in 39 innings. He’s yet to allow a homer and has surrendered just 26 hits in those 39 frames. If and when he takes the hill for the Tigers, it’ll be his first big league action since a brief 2011 stint with the Yankees.