The Tigers are shutting down Casey Mize from his throwing program, manager A.J. Hinch told reporters (including Jason Beck of MLB.com). The right-hander, who has been out since mid-April due to a sprained medial ligament in his elbow, had been experiencing continued soreness while throwing from 90 feet at flat ground.
Hinch indicated Mize was headed for further medical evaluation, although there’s no indication a surgical procedure is under consideration at this point. The medial ligament is not one that typically serves as a precursor to Tommy John surgeries, and the organization has maintained optimism thus far that he’d be able to rehab from the issue without going under the knife. Mize has experienced multiple setbacks during a recovery process that has already dragged longer than the team initially anticipated, however.
That’s no doubt frustrating to both pitcher and team alike. The Tigers’ starting staff has been decimated by injury, one of the reasons the club has an underwhelming 21-33 record. Mize’s absence has loomed particularly large, as he made just two starts before the injury. That’s come on the heels of the former first overall pick tossing a team-leading 150 1/3 frames in 2021, when he pitched to a solid 3.71 ERA.
Mize, who turned 25 last month, is among the most important players in the organization. Detroit has built a good chunk of their rebuild on the young trio of Mize, Tarik Skubal and Matt Manning — whom they envision joining offseason signee Eduardo Rodríguez as the core of the long-term rotation. Skubal has had the breakout season for which Detroit has been hoping, working to a 2.15 ERA with a stellar 27% strikeout rate through his first ten starts. Mize and Manning, however, have both been on the IL since mid-April.
Manning, who’s dealing with shoulder soreness, was shut down from throwing himself late last month after a bout of biceps tendinitis arose during a minor league rehab stint. Hinch said today that doctors have cleared him to restart a throwing program (via Beck). It’s still not precisely clear when he might be able to embark on a new rehab assignment, but it’s positive news that Manning is again able to throw in any capacity after his recent setback.
Mize îs already on the 60-day injured list. Manning is on the 10-day IL, but his placement is retroactive to April 17. He’s likely to wind up transferred to the 60-day IL himself whenever the Tigers need a 40-man roster spot, as he certainly won’t be back on an MLB mound by the middle of June.