Behind P Casey Mize, Tigers look to sink Mariners

MLB Baseball

Tigers pitcher Casey Mize collected his most recent victory against the Seattle Mariners. Following two no-decisions and a loss, Mize will look to get another win against the Mariners on Wednesday in Detroit.

In the longest of his 18 career starts, Mize held the Mariners to one run on three hits in 7 2/3 innings on May 17 as the Tigers posted a 4-1 victory.

Mize lasted seven innings in his most recent outing against the Chicago White Sox on Thursday. He only allowed five hits but three of them were solo homers in a 4-1 loss. Mize didn’t issue a walk for the second consecutive start, but the long balls marred an otherwise solid performance.

“I felt like my stuff was there and I felt good physically,” he said. “I just hate the outcome part of it.”

Mize (3-4, 3.34 ERA) had given up a total of two homers in his previous six starts.

“He can really pitch,” manager A.J. Hinch said. “He can mix pitches, he reads swings. He can see what they’re trying to do. And more often than not he’s been able to execute.”

Mize hasn’t given up more than three runs since he surrendered a season-high six runs to Kansas City on April 23. He limited opponents to a combined six runs in five May starts.

“We continue to see Casey throw quality outings,” Hinch said. “He’s not going to be happy with (his last outing) and we’re not happy with the result, but he threw the ball well.”

He’ll be opposed by Chris Flexen (5-3, 4.70), who has seen wild swings of consistency of late. On May 14, he gave up one run in 5 1/3 innings against Cleveland. He was torched for eight runs in 1 2/3 innings at San Diego a week later. In his final May start, he blanked Texas for seven innings.

Last Wednesday, he allowed five runs on seven hits in six innings against Oakland. All of the runs came in the third inning, but Flexen bounced back with three scoreless frames.

“You get the big inning early in the game like that, you’ve got to kind of wash it away,” manager Scott Servais said. “I thought he did a pretty good job after that.”

Flexen possesses a 1.42 WHIP but has held the opposition to one or no runs in half of his 10 starts. If not for one bad inning against the A’s, he’d come into Wednesday’s game with consecutive quality outings.

“There’s always room to be better,” Flexen said. “And I’ve done a very good job of limiting the big innings, the big numbers, and I definitely put us in a hole there.”

He’ll be making his first career appearance against Detroit.

The Tigers won the opener of the three-game series on Tuesday, 5-3, as Eric Haase hit his sixth homer of the month. Haase, who wasn’t on the major league roster to start the season, batted cleanup as Jeimer Candelario was placed on the bereavement list.

“Haase has got a lot of confidence right now,” Hinch said. “He’s rolling pretty good. Even though you guys keep writing about him, he’s staying very humble about it and just taking his at-bats day by day.”

–Field Level Media

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