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A sometimes-irreverent look at Detroit's Boys of Summer, the Tigers, as they try to defend their three straight American League Central titles.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Tigers reportedly ink 14th-round pick RHP Josh Heddinger


When Vanderbilt — one of the main collegiate pipelines for the Detroit Tigers’ farm system — faced Georgia Tech in a winner-take-all game in the 2013 regional championship game, it was eventual Tigers draft pick Buck Farmer that the Commodores bested that day.

But it was Farmer’s teammate, Josh Heddinger, who’d put the Rambling Wreck in the position to play that game, pitching a complete-game, two-hit shutout of the Commodores a day earlier, forcing the if-necessary contest.

They could soon be teammates again, as Heddinger reportedly reached a deal Tuesday with the Tigers after he was drafted in the 14th round of last weekend’s draft. MLBpipeline.com’s Jim Callis reported he signed for $100,000.

Farmer went in the fifth round of last year’s draft, and has been part of the exceptional rotation at the Tigers’ Class A West Michigan affiliate.

While Heddinger has a similar build — 6-foot-4 and 225 pounds — and delivery to his former college teammate, he had far less consistent success on the collegiate level, going just 10-9 with a 4.85 ERA in 27 career starts at Georgia Tech. His junior season was not exceptional, either, as he went 4-5 with a 4.04 ERA, walking 33 and striking out 64 in 82 1/3 innings pitched.

He's not unused to pitching in big games, though. Heddinger started the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament title game as a freshman, a year to the day after leading Buford High to the Georgia Class AA state championship.

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