The Tigers announced a pair of forthcoming promotions with active rosters expanding tomorrow. Detroit will select right-hander Miguel Díaz onto the 40-man roster and recall infielder Andre Lipcius from Triple-A Toledo. The 40-man roster remains at capacity after José Cisnero went unclaimed on waivers. As a result, they’ll need to make a corresponding move when selecting Díaz’s contract.
Díaz is up for the first time this season and his sixth MLB campaign overall. The 28-year-old reliever pitched in three contests for Detroit last season. He was non-tendered at year’s end but returned on a minor league pact. Díaz has pitched 57 innings with Toledo on the year, working to a 5.05 ERA. That’s largely because of an abnormally low 59.6% strand rate, as his underlying marks are better than the run prevention would suggest.
In addition to picking up 14 saves for the Mud Hens, Díaz is striking hitters out at a quality 28.6% clip. He has kept the ball on the ground on nearly half the batted balls against him. He’s issuing a few more walks than ideal, but the combination of whiffs and grounders will get him a middle innings spot in A.J. Hinch’s bullpen.
Now that he’s back on the MLB roster, Díaz will be eligible for arbitration next offseason. The Tigers could keep him around beyond this year if they’d like, though it wouldn’t be surprising if he’s again non-tendered after logging a few innings down the stretch.
It’s the first career promotion for Lipcius, who was initially added to the 40-man roster last winter. The right-handed hitter was a third-round pick out of Tennessee back in 2019. He has never been an elite prospect but has a solid minor league track record. Lipcius placed among the organizational top 30 prospects at Baseball America in each of the past two offseasons, though he wasn’t on the outlet’s midseason update of the farm system.
Lipcius has bounced around the diamond this year. He’s suited up at each of first, second and third base and in left field. He’s not regarded as a particularly good defender at any spot but has the ability to move around the diamond to keep his bat in the lineup. The 25-year-old is hitting .272/.363/.412 with 10 homers through 416 Triple-A plate appearances. While that’s roughly average overall production given the very hitter-friendly nature of the top minor league level, Lipcius has shown strong strike zone awareness. He’s walking at a 12.5% clip while striking out just 17.5% of the time.