Kody Clemens called up by Detroit Tigers
It hasn’t been quite the start of the season that the Detroit Tigers and their fans had hoped for coming into the 2022 Major League Baseball campaign. They find themselves near the bottom of the American League Centra Division with an abysmal 18-29 record.
However, the team announced on Monday that they have decided to call up their third-round pick from the 2018 MLB Draft Kody Clemens. The Tigers selected the Clemens with the 79th overall pick in 2018 and are prepared to finally give him his MLB debut.
“We don’t need him to be superman,” Tigers’ manager A.J. Hinch said before Monday’s game at Comerica Park against the Minnesota Twins, via Yahoo. “He’s not the answer to all of our problems, but this is an opportunity for him to elbow his way into the big leagues for the first time, and he’s earned that. He’s performed his way here.”
Clemens is the son of MLB legend and seven-time Cy Young winner Roger Clemens but is not a pitcher like his father was. Kody is a left-handed hitter who can play numerous positions defensively. He is currently considered the organization’s 17th-ranked prospect and should have the opportunity to prove he belongs in the big leagues throughout the week.
“Obviously, I’m trying to create my own career path here, but to wear his number is awesome,” Kody Clemens said after learning about his call up, via Sportsnet. “Luckily, we always say that I’m glad I’m a hitter, not a pitcher, so I don’t have to live up to what he did. Half a career as his is unbelievable.”
While there will certainly be pressure on the 26-year-old to perform, his manager has made it clear that he just wants the youngster to continue doing what he has been doing in Triple-A.
“If he can come up and do what he’s done in Triple-A, it’ll be a nice boost for us and a nice addition to the lineup,” Hinch said. “It’s going to create some crazy defensive alignments. Replacing Robbie, who’s all outfield, with an infielder is a challenge, but his bat is what got him here.”
Clemens was called up as a result of a roster opening up because the Tigers were forced to place outfielder Robbie Grossman on the 10-day injured list due to a neck sprain. While he is primarily a second baseman, Clemens can also play first base, third base and the corner outfield positions.
“We’ve been very careful with when we’re going to call him up,” Hinch said. “Putting him on the bench makes you feel better, but it might not make you any closer to winning. But his name has been tossed around a couple different times. Now, we’re going to force him into the lineup.”
It’ll be interesting to see how Clemens does in the MLB and whether his stay in Detroit will last longer than the initial plan. The infielder is just looking to help out the team in anyway he can.
“As soon as we got A.J. (Hinch) a couple years back, he took me into his office and just said, `Hey, do you play anywhere else?”’ Clemens said. “I was like, I really played a lot of third in college. I’ll play third base, outfield, wherever you want.”