DETROIT – It’s the first Mize Day of 2021, and the Detroit Tigers’ top pitching prospect is off to a hot start!
Casey Mize got his first start of the season Tuesday, and he began by striking out three of the first four Minnesota Twins he saw.
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Luis Arraez, who has only struck out 43 times in 504 career plate appearances, came up empty on a nasty splitter that dove below the strike zone.
Then, Jorge Polanco looked at a splitter at the top of the zone. It was a bit of a hanger, but Mize will take it anyway.
Nelson Cruz poked a two-out single to right field, because of course he did. But then, Mize ended the inning by blowing Max Kepler away with a 96 mph heater.
You can see all three punch-out pitches below.
Mize didn’t have a great first season in 2020, but there were so many variables in the shortened season that this feels like a fresh start. So far, he’s already ramped his fastball up over 97 mph and showcased the splitter/slider combo that made him the No. 1 overall pick in 2018.