LAKELAND, Fla. - After four months at the Detroit Tigers minor league camp - two of which he spent rehabilitating a broken thumb on his pitching hand- Micah Kellogg is healthy and ready to begin his professional baseball career next week.
The Lakewood native said Thursday night that he has been assigned to the Tigers' Gulf Coast League team and will be ready when the season opens a week from today.
''I'm just grateful to be on a roster and have an opportunity to play this summer,'' Kellogg said. ''It didn't really matter where I went.''
Kellogg arrived in Florida in late winter and promptly broke his thumb on the second day of camp during pitcher fielding practice. The rehab went as expected, however, and the 2008 Southwestern Central School graduate was able to make three appearances in extended spring training, working a total of 2 innings.
''Right now, I'd say I'm near where I left off (before the injury),'' said Kellogg, who registered 90 mph on the radar gun in his relief appearances. ''With more outings, I'll get more comfortable with my mechanics and I'll be topping off where I was.''
The Gulf Coast League generally plays its games in the afternoon in the Florida heat and humidity, which, Kellogg admits, will take some getting used to.
''It was 85 degrees at 8:30 this morning,'' he said, ''and by mid-afternoon it was 95 degrees and humid. It was really hot and it will be tough to get used to, but you have to do it.''
Kellogg was signed by the Tigers last September after a successful tryout in Lakeland. Before signing with Detroit, Kellogg pitched at Jamestown Community College and Flagler (Fla.) College.