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Casey Mize may have a shot at the 2020 Rookie of the Year award

It may seem unlikely that Mize gets enough playing time to qualify, but the odds-makers have other ideas.

Casey Mize Smile
Feb. 12, 2020; Lakeland, Florida, USA — Detroit Tigers pitching prospect Casey Mize smiles while interacting with his fans.
Adam Dubbin / Bless You Boys

Former No. 1 draft pick Casey Mize has been the apple of Tigers fans’ eyes since he was first selected out of Auburn in the 2018 Major League Baseball Draft and quickly became the crown jewel of Detroit’s player development system. Despite injuries that plagued him down the stretch last year abbreviating his first full professional season, they hype continues on.

According to Jay Cohen of the Associated Press, Mize is one of several big names who could make a significant impact this summer, including players that many baseball fans have been salivating over such as Jo Adell, Carter Kieboom, Dylan Carlson, Luis Robert, Brendan McKay, Gavin Lux, Jesús Luzardo and Cristian Pache. Cohen had the following to say about the Tigers’ highly-touted right-hander.

It’s a big season for the 22-year-old Mize, who threw a no-hitter in his Double-A Erie debut last year, but also was hampered by shoulder inflammation. The No. 1 overall pick in the 2018 amateur draft went 6-3 with a 3.20 ERA in 15 starts with the SeaWolves.

Cool Media reports that is quite bullish on Mize, whose numbers suggest that he is one of the front-runners for the American League Rookie of the Year Award with +450 odds — only White Sox prospect Michael Kopech sports a better number at +300. Mize is followed by Luis Robert, whose odds are +600, along with Brendan McKay, Jesus Luzardo and Jo Adell who come in at +1000.

So far this spring, Mize has looked a bit rough in his initial outings but those are mostly inconsequential this early in the season. In two games — one start, one save opportunity — the right-hander is sporting an ugly 9.00 ERA in two innings pitched, giving up three hits and two earned runs while striking out four and issuing one free pass over the course of 21 pitches. Once he shakes off the offseason rust, improvements in those numbers are expected.

Barring any injury or significant setback, Tigers fans can expect to see the organization’s top prospect at some point this summer, but the question is, “When?” If he gets promoted early enough and amasses the necessary amount of innings on the mound, he stands as good of a chance of any other names on the list of putting up a performance strong enough to bring home the AL Rookie of the Year Award next fall.