The Detroit Tigers are in Texas for a three-game series against the Houston Astros. The Tigers got off to a promising start this season with two wins in a row to open the year against the Cleveland Indians, 3-2 and 5-2. This is baseball, though, and two games is a drop in the bucket, especially the first two games of the regular season. After the 2-0 start out of the gate, the Tigers are looking at a record going into Monday night.
In even worse news, they are going to be without Miguel Crabrera with a bicep strain. Miggy was placed on the 10-day IL, so it doesn’t appear to be a long-term problem for him. However, it’s not a good sign for a guy that has been battling injuries over the last several years. Still a reliable player, though he has not been the same player since the injury bug hit him hard. The Triple Crown winner can still contribute, but not up to what he’s being paid to do.
In any case, Miggy out of the lineup certainly sets the Tigers back at the plate. The Tigers are coming off a 0-3 sweep against the Indians. After a quality start against the Indians this season, they struggled on the road at Progressive Field in Cleveland. The Tribe won pretty comfortably in all three games, with 4-1, 11-3, and 5-2 wins. Logan Allen put in a big performance with 2 hits and 1 earned run allowed through 5 innings of work. The first four hitters in the Tigers’ lineup failed to record a hit, and only Jonathan Scoop had two hits yesterday.
The Astros are coming off some struggles of their own. They are back-to-back losers against the Oakland Athletics, with losses of 6-2 and 7-3 at Minute Maid Park. It started off well on Friday with the ‘Stros recording a win of 6-2, though that quickly turned into mush for the Astros. They will go into another series at home with a record of 6-3, so things are looking fine despite the two losses.
Detroit is expected to send prospect Casey Mize to the bump tonight. Mize, who was drafted with the first overall pick in 2018, has a lot of expectations on his shoulders. For an organization that drafted and developed Justin Verlander into a perennial All-Star, Tigers’ fans are expecting the same out of Mize. The Astros will counter with the reliable and established Zack Greinke at home tonight. Head below for our free Tigers vs. Astros pick on April 12, 2021.
Detroit Tigers vs. Houston Astros MLB Betting Odds:
Tigers vs. Astros Prediction:
Casey Mize has a bright future ahead of him with the Tigers. He’s still raw and going through the developing years, though. As a rookie last season, Mize had his moments, but was largely hittable. Mize posted an ERA of 6.99 and 1.48 WHIP through 28.1 innings of work. He had command issues, and failed to pick up a win in his first season in the majors. Mize had a so-so opening outing in 2021 against the Minnesota Twins. If you look at his ERA of 2.25 with just 1 earned run allowed through 4 innings, it looks all good for Mize.
However, he had to fight himself out of jams often, and he threw 82 pitches in only 4 frames. Mize left the game with 5 hits and 2 walks for a 1.75 WHIP. The Twins were reaching base, but they failed to convert. His work in spring training didn’t indicate that Mize was in good form going into this season. Mize recorded an ERA of 7.23 and 1.77 WHIP, with teams hitting .289 through 18.2 innings on the hill.
He’s likely going to end up being a good pitcher, bust is way too much of an overreaction for a 23-year-old, but Mize still has a lot to learn before developing into the next Justin Verlander in Detroit. Mize gets a tough matchup against a Houston team that is looking for a big response after struggling the last two days. The ‘Stros will trot out one of the most reliable arms in the game tonight. Greinke continues to produce at 37 years of age. Although, he did have his worst season since 2016 a year ago.
Greinke had an ERA above 4.00 for the first time since 2016 with the Diamondbacks. In his defense, it was a shortened season, so it’s hard to compare. Greinke has gotten off to a fast start in his first two starts of the 2021 campaign. He conceded 8 hits and 2 earned runs across 13 innings against the Angels and A’s, both outings on the road. That equates to a 1.38 ERA and 0.69 WHIP for Greinke. The Tigers have hit .135 with 2 RBI against Greinke in 23 at-bats. In a big bounce-back game, expect the Astros to clear the Tigers by at least 2 runs tonight.