Despite having not thrown a professional pitch yet, Detroit Tigers prospect Casey Mize is getting plenty of love from the baseball media. He ranked 18th on Baseball America’s midseason top 100 list released earlier this week, and is the No. 14 prospect in all of baseball according to ESPN’s Keith Law.
The No. 1 overall pick in June’s amateur draft, Mize is a polished, promising arm who should rocket through the Tigers system. He was the consensus top prospect in this year’s draft class, and topped all of Law’s pre-draft rankings. While Law predicted the Tigers would shift gears and take Georgia Tech’s Joey Bart on draft day, he praised Detroit for sticking with Mize, who he called “clearly the best” prospect in the draft. That was reflected in these rankings, with Mize sitting 31 spots ahead of the next 2018 draftee (lefty Matthew Liberatore, at No. 45).
Here’s what Law had to say about Mize this time around.
Mize would regularly pitch at 92-96 with a wipeout splitter and plus slider, and his command was excellent for a college junior. He has had minor arm issues in the past, but nothing serious since high school, and I don’t think he carries any more risk than any other starter his age with a plus fastball.
He’s a potential ace because of the combination of command/control and one or even two put-away pitches among his secondary offerings.
The team has not yet assigned Mize to an affiliate to close out the 2018 season, but odds are he will stay in Lakeland to pitch for the Flying Tigers. He could start as high as Double-A in 2019, and, barring injury, should be in line for an MLB debut in 2020 (if not sooner).
While Mize was the only Tigers player on Law’s list, he was one of five Tigers players on 2080 Baseball’s midseason top 125 prospect rankings. He actually ranks third among Tigers prospects on that list at No. 38 overall, with Matt Manning (33) and Alex Faedo (37) just ahead. Outfielders Christin Stewart and Daz Cameron also made the list, at No. 79 and No. 84 overall, respectively. Mize was also the top 2018 draftee on 2080’s list, just ahead of outfielder Jarred Kelenic, who was drafted by the New York Mets.