If you’ve spent any amount of time on Tigers Twitter, you have heard the name Akil Baddoo. The 22-year-old OF has been launching bombs out of Joker Marchant Park in Lakeland since Spring Training began. However, Baddoo is much more than just a few highlights. He has hit .344 with 4 HRs, 9 RBI, and 3 SB. This impressive performance has made him a fan-favorite to make the Opening Day roster. But who is Baddoo and how did he become a Tiger?
Akil Baddoo – From Maryland to the Majors
Akil Baddoo was born on August 16th, 1998 in Silver Spring, Maryland. He went to high school at Salem HS in Conyers, Georgia. In his senior season, he was the ninth-best outfielder in the nation and the eighth-best prospect in the state of Georgia. He was originally committed to Kentucky. But, the Twins scooped Baddoo up in the second round as compensatory pick in 2016.
He played four seasons in the Twins minor league system, never cracking the pro roster. In rookie ball, single-A, and high-A, he hit .241 with 44 2B, 21 3B, and 21 HR. Baddoo was left off the Twins 40-man roster after his low-level stints. He was picked up by the Tigers in the Rule 5 Draft in 2020. It appeared the team just wanted him to fill out their roster. However, Detroit must have seen something special in Baddoo – and they were certainly right.
The Future of Akil Baddoo
The rules of the Rule 5 Draft dictate that Baddoo must stay on the Tigers’ 40 man roster for the season. He could put up a fight and find himself in the starting lineup with star outfield prospect Daz Cameron.
While Spring Training can often inflate stats and make teams look much better than they are, Baddoo looks to be a solid player. He will make the 26-man roster and be in the dugout at Comerica all summer at least.