The Tigers agreed to a minor league contract with outfielder DJ Peters, as first indicated on the transaction log at MiLB.com. He’s been assigned to Triple-A Toledo.
The 27-year-old Peters ranked among the Dodgers’ top 20 prospects at Baseball America from 2018-21, reaching the big leagues as a 25-year-old during the ’21 season but struggling in limited opportunities. Peters logged just 34 plate appearances with the Dodgers before being designated for assignment after they acquired Danny Duffy, at which point the Rangers claimed him off waivers.
While the Dodgers’ outfield was generally full at the time of that transaction, the Rangers had far more opportunity. Peters appeared in 52 games and tallied 206 plate appearances down the stretch in Texas, showing impressive power but also extremely shaky plate discipline. Overall, between the two clubs, Peters hit .197/.242/.422 with 13 home runs, nine doubles, a triple, a pair of steals, and 34.2% strikeout rate against a 5% walk rate in 240 plate appearances.
The Rangers retained Peters’ rights into the offseason but granted him his release in order to pursue an opportunity with the Lotte Giants of the Korea Baseball Organization. Peters improved on his K-BB profile in the KBO, fanning at a reduced 21.8% clip against a more palatable 7.3% walk rate. However, his .228/.299/.402 batting line in 354 trips to the plate still resulted in him being waived this past July.
Peters has long been touted for his above-average speed, huge raw power and the defensive tools needed to play center field, but he’s yet to break through in the game’s upper levels. He’s a career .240/.343/.415 hitter in parts of three Triple-A seasons, but he’s also punched out in 30.2% of his 540 plate appearances at that level. Unlike his brief stints in the Majors and in the KBO, Peters does have a strong 11% walk rate in Triple-A, at least.
It’s an intriguing set of tools overall, particularly for a Tigers club with little certainty in the outfield (as recently explored by MLBTR’s Anthony Franco). Former top prospect Riley Greene will presumably return to his role as the everyday center fielder, and he’ll be joined in the outfield by veteran Austin Meadows, who struggled at the plate in 2022 before missing time due to vertigo-like symptoms, a pair of Achilles injuries and eventually an agreed-upon absence with the team that allowed him to focus on his mental health, which he candidly disclosed to fans via social media.
The other outfield reps will be divided up among players like Akil Baddoo, Kerry Carpenter and trade acquisition Matt Vierling. Outfield prospect Parker Meadows — Austin’s younger brother — is also on Detroit’s 40-man roster, and they’ll have veteran speedster Jonathan Davis and well-regarded prospect Justyn-Henry Malloy (acquired from the Braves in exchange for Joe Jimenez) in camp as non-roster invitees. It’s feasible that the right-handed-hitting Peters could eventually play his way into that mix, especially when considering that each of Greene, Baddoo, Carpenter and both Meadows brothers bat from the left side of the plate.
A Joey Gallo wannabe.
True fact: When he was a Dodgers prospect, D.J. Peters homered twice in the same inning off a rehabbing Madison Bumgarner a few years back.
DJ is roster filler at this point his K rate cannot be overlooked
It’s almost a guarantee that he won’t be Tigers worst player for striking out, and quite possibly be considered one of their best projects this year
If he was a pitcher, I could understand the Tigers wanting to see if they could straighten him out. They do well in the pitching department. They can’t figure out how to make their own prospects hit though. So, I’m surprised they think they can straighten out this guy. Best of luck though.
They just brought in new coaches in the hitting dept after last year. We will get to find out quickly if their new approach works.
Tigers have 3 pitching coaches now
And, three hitting coaches now.
The SO% is more a red flag rather than an issue, but Peters is an able CF plus a threat on the bases (if he gets there) whose wRC+ could reach 90 if he hits just a little better. This is a very good minor-league signing.
Tigers’ OF was already pretty crowded. Now we’re adding another light hitting, no speed OF’er? How about a corner IF’er?
Um, he’d be the fastest one out there if he played. And not sure about light-hitting…he slugs.
Going to be a lively Tigers clubhouse; they are bringing in a DJ !!
Bart Harley Jarvis
I wonder if he’s any relation to DJ Fluffernutter?
Joey Bart Future MVP
When baseball had juiced balls this guy looked like the next Cody Bellinger with his power/speed. Sadly without the juiced balls he looks like the next Cody Bellinger with his long levers and high k rate.
D.J PETER’S………….COME ON DOWN………….WELCOME TO DETROIT………..RIGHT HANDED D.H../OF.TO GO WITH CARPENTER…….
With Miguel being on his last year, this is a much needed big guy for the right side. I’m sure he’s happy to be here too. With everyone on the team at the same starting line, it’s wide open for success here.
Beldar J. Conehead
Keep signing cheap guys instead of experienced MLB players that cost something and watch attendance and viewership go down.
Until they know which players just had bad years and which lost their way permanently, they don’t know where to add. Besides, young players with unknown upside are more exciting to watch than some one like Profar, whose limitations are already known.
They have to build a core. The Tigers can’t go out and get a bunch of FAs. Not now. In truth, they are better off ditching Javy.
The Saber-toothed Superfife
Another guy, “who deserves a chance”. As much as I would like them to grab top prospects, there really isn’t anyone on the roster, “who doesn’t deserve a chance”. It will be interesting to see.
The BIGGEST question this season is Javy Baez.
If and When…should we start booing? Do we boo right out of the gate, allowing us to take credit for any signs of improvement? Inspiring him so to speak….and starting a fun, 5 year tradition of always booing Javy, no matter what happens? Could be fun…..Or if he still is subpar..he can blame us for “the bad vibe”.
Or do we wait? Boo if he still is sub par in an effort to drive him out of town….not so much fun, I suppose…….
I wish I made that much money. Call.me jealous, it’s ok.
How about not booing anyone? How about we try that?
The Saber-toothed Superfife
Finally ! The Tigers got someone who may help ! I like this pickup.
Riley Greene really isn’t the best CF. He should be moved to LF. Austin Meadows and Akil Badoo are not very good OFs at all.
Baddoo isn’t a very good center fielder, but he was better than average in left field last year. Meadows wasn’t bad either, in a limited sample size.
And while there was always talk of eventually moving Greene to a corner outfield role, he was also better than average last year, at least according to Fielding Bible’s defensive runs scored.
Motor City Beach Bum
I don’t dislike them signing him. I had hoped they might scoop him last year before Texas grabbed him. He’s only 25 and worth a shot. How many guys just like this did they get good mileage out of in SF when Harris was there.
As long as Hinch and his new batting coach, a guy who never even made it to A ball, keep their jive about “letting the pitch get deep for more fly balls” to themselves, all these retreads have a shot at a new life.. Great athletes are often a tip from a casual onlooker away from turning into great hitters, same as pitchers who move a single finger to grip a certain pitch become unhittable. Fast and good power? Sure, give him a look…what can it hurt?
“Swing away Merrill, Merrill swing away”
I thought Harris wanted guys who commanded the strike zone.
Peters is AAA filler, nothing more.