Bobby Miller: The One Major Flaw with Dodgers Top Pitching Prospect
After a successful Minor League season, Bobby Miller brings excitement as one of the Dodger’s promising prospects. Although he carries loads of potential, Keith Law of The Athletic identified one particular area Miller can improve on. Law wrote an evaluation of Miller in a Top 100 prospects list.
Los Angeles clearly has a great group of prospects, as other guys on the team also made their way on the list including Diego Cartaya and Miguel Vargas.
Miller sat at No. 28, where Law began with high praise of the 23-year-old:
“For pure stuff, Miller has few peers, if any, among minor-league starter prospects.”
Between Double-A Tulsa and Triple-A Oklahoma City, the righty went a combined 6-6 with a 4.45 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, and 11.6 strikeouts across 91 innings pitched.
Miller has a high-90s rising fastball and a mid-90s 2-seamer. Law highlights the pitcher’s power with his fastball, slider, and curveball.
“He can sit 96-100 mph and has touched 102 in shorter outings, working with a four-pitch mix where everything is above-average. His changeup has unusual power to it — it shouldn’t be that surprising, if Miller were to throw in the towel, he’d do it harder than anyone else — but also is very deceptive out of his hand, generating swings and misses about half the time he throws it. His slider is 85-91 with sharp downward break, and he’s got a power breaking ball — again, he has power stuff, in case you didn’t catch that earlier — that’s pretty close to 12-6, and I’d probably put it a half-grade over the slider if I didn’t know that the slider was slightly more effective at getting whiffs and chases this year.”
As a young prospect, Miller does, of course, have room for improvement despite the impressive skill he does possess. Law brings one significant concern about Miller to the forefront:
“The one flaw in Miller’s game is that he’s worse with runners on base, in results but also in stuff, losing about a half a mile an hour on his pitches and missing fewer bats when he’s working from the stretch. With the bases empty, hitters hit .188/.263/.259 off Miller, but with men on base they hit .278/.335/.451, including eight of the 12 homers Miller allowed on the season. It’s enough that Miller is going to have to make an adjustment at some point to reach his ceiling.”
With as big of a difference as those numbers are, that gap is something to be aware of. Miller certainly has time to work on it, and if he stays the course, Law admitted that Miller will be a top-10 pitcher in baseball.
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