CHICAGO -- Every once in a while, Avisail Garcia gets the right situation to show off his potential as a player. Monday was one of those times, even though it came with Garcia in the field instead of at the plate.
Garcia couldn't stop Alex Rios from tagging up from second base and going to third on A.J. Pierzynski's liner to right, but he came awfully close. His throw hit third baseman Miguel Cabrera on one hop, right in the spot where Cabrera had a chance to tag Rios. He couldn't get it there in time, but he wasn't far off.
It was reminiscent of a Spring Training play in which Garcia threw out a runner at third base with a line-drive throw on the fly from foul territory in right field. It was an example of why the Tigers aren't completely ruling him out from spending next season in Detroit, despite less than half a season in Double-A ball and no time in Triple-A.
"I think he's got a chance to be an outstanding Major League player at some point," Tigers manager Jim Leyland said. "Could I say today that he would be ready for next year [in the big leagues], slam dunk? I couldn't say that."
Leyland couldn't answer what the best path would be for Garcia, whether he'd be better off getting some finishing work at Toledo or learning on the job in Detroit in a part-time role.
"But I really like what I see," Leyland said. "He's a tools guy, a terrific tools guy. He's pretty much got them all. I think the power will come. Game power, that's usually the last thing to come for kids. But he's got all the tools."