What to Expect from Tigers Starting Pitcher Reese Olson

Reese Olson of the Detroit Tigers

In need of starting pitching, the Tigers will rely on one of the organization’s bright prospects to fill a hole. Right-hander Reese Olson, acquired by the Tigers two years ago, is set to make his MLB debut this coming week. Here’s a closer look at the 23-year-old pitcher.

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A Look at Olson

Twenty-three-old right-hander Reese Olson was drafted by the Brewers in the 13th round of the 2018 MLB Draft. A Georgia prep pitcher, Olson showcased interesting stuff but also struggled with command in the first two seasons of his pro career.

The 23-year-old was acquired by the Tigers in the summer of 2021 in exchange for Daniel Norris, a trade that’s worked out well for Detroit. Last season with Erie (AA), Olson struck out 168 over 119.2 innings pitched opposite 38 walks.

While Olson might not have the same prospect helium as compared to Jackson Jobe or Ty Madden, the 23-year-old is ranked #11 by MLB.com in the Detroit farm system. As one could tell by the walks numbers — he’s put 22 on base over 36 innings in Toledo (AAA) this season — command is a question mark. However, he does have hit-and-miss stuff. Evaluators love the changeup he can play off his mid-90s fastball and he does have a couple of breaking balls in his arsenal.

Olson is slated to make his first MLB start on June 2 against the White Sox.

A Look at the Tigers

Olson will look to provide some stability to a Tigers rotation that’s struggled with a quite bit this season. Yes, Detroit’s received fantastic production out of Eduardo Rodriguez in 2023. However, the lefty is currently on the IL, hence the need to call up Olson.

Detroit has received solid numbers from Michael Lorenzen, but the same can’t be said for Joey Wentz and Spencer Turnbull, the latter of whom was placed on the IL in May after experiencing neck discomfort. Between Rodriguez, Turnbull, Matt Manning, Casey Mize, and Tarik Skubal all on the injured list, a team once flush with pitching depth has taken a hit in that department.

Still, the Tigers at 25-28 are still very much in the hunt for the AL Central crown. Olson will be relied upon — at least for the immediate future — to keep Detroit in it.

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