Detroit Tigers placing SP Ivan Nova on IL opens door for Casey Mize

Detroit Tigers fans, along with plenty of media members, continue to wonder when GM Al Avila will finally call up No. 1 pitching prospect Casey Mize to make his Major League debut.

On Saturday, the Tigers announced that RHP Ivan Nova has been placed on the 10-day injured list with right triceps tendinitis. That, coupled with manager Ron Gardenhire revealing that Tyler Alexander will piggyback off Michael Fulmer on Sunday, means the Tigers now have two open spots in their rotation.

Those open spots in the rotation will come on Monday (Matthew Boyd will almost certainly get the nod) and Tuesday in Chicago against the White Sox and now we wait to see if Mize finally gets the call to fill one of those openings.

Mize, who reportedly tossed a couple of innings in Toledo on Friday, could (and should) make his debut this coming week. That is unless Al Avila continues to be stubborn and holds back who could be the best pitcher in the Tigers’ organization.

When asked before Saturday’s game against the Indians, Gardenhire was asked about Mize possibly being called up and he did not spill the beans.

“There is a lot of talk going on right now,” Gardenhire said. “Trying to figure out a rotation. It’ll all get straightened out. We’re still in conversations about this — it all just happened last night. We’ve got a game today and we’ll work on it.

“We’ve written this thing out five different times in five different ways. We’ll get it straightened out.”

On Friday, Avila explained why he has been extra patient with Mize and some of the Tigers’ other top prospects.

“We felt this year, we had a shortened spring training and summer camp is not the greatest way to prepare for a season,” Avila said on MLB Radio. “So our main thing with Casey and a lot of other young pitchers is, we want to give them more time to build up their pitch counts and build up their innings and work on their repertoire — not just throw them in the fire in a shortened season after a shortened camp.

“For us we want to err on the side of caution more so than anything and give them more time.”

It will be interesting to see if Avila has a change of heart not that the Tigers have two open slots in their rotation.


Written by Don Drysdale

I am a fan of all Detroit sports and LOVE to write about them!

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