DETROIT -- Tyler Collins and Evan Reed were among the 25 players who made the trip north with the Tigers out of Spring Training Friday. They weren't sure, at that point, whether they were part of the 25-man Opening Day roster. The chance of the Tigers making a trade or a waiver claim were too high to guarantee anything.
They finally got the news Saturday, with Collins signing his first Major League contract. The left-handed-hitting left fielder, who hasn't played a game above Double-A level yet, could finally stop, secretly hoping the Tigers found nothing on the waiver wire.
"I mean, you want to make the team. Everybody wants to make the team," Collins said. "The fact that I have, I don't know what to say. It hasn't hit me yet. Tomorrow it'll hit me, I think, but right now I'm just like, 'Oh man.'"
Collins said his mom is flying in from Fort Worth, Texas, to be in attendance for his potential Major League debut. He also has an aunt and uncle in Grand Rapids, Mich., who are driving over. They didn't get to see him in the Minor League because he bypassed Class A West Michigan on his way up the Tigers system.
Reed wasn't quite as nervous, in part because he already had a couple stints in Detroit last year. He earned a bullpen spot with a solid Spring Training that included a walk and 12 strikeouts over 11 1/3 innings with two earned runs allowed.
"I could do the math. Once we got down to 25 people, I had a strong sense that I had made the team," Reed said. "But until you're really told, I just kept playing it out in my head. But I felt confident that I would. I just felt like I was a big league pitcher.
"It wasn't like I was walking about nervous, but it was a good exhale. It felt great. I knew I earned it, but in the whole scheme of things, this is just beginning. I mean, we have 162 games. I want to go and try to earn a role, starting tomorrow."