Correct me if I’m wrong but the Dodgers focus for improving the bullpen should be on getting pitchers who can bridge the game between regular pen guys and Kenley Jansen. Andrew Miller is that guy.
I feel like introducing Miller is a waste of time so I’ll keep this part quick.
Miller has an unreal slider and a great fastball. Albeit being 34-years of age and one of the most expensive relievers currently on the market, the left-handed pitcher still makes a ton of sense in LA.
Miller has simply outmatched hitters for the last 6 seasons. His lengthy delivery and frame give him some serious deception on his pitches that hitters really have a hard time with. In his career, which includes his days as a really bad starter in Florida, Miller has struck out an average 10.9 batters per nine innings.
But, the attraction to Andrew Miller does not come from the strikeouts, all though that helps a lot. The draw here is from Miller’s late-inning dominance of which he can dish out in as little as one out or as much as three innings.
Aside from 2018, which for argument’s sake we will not count and I’ll explain why in a bat, Miller’s highest ERA since being converted to a full-time reliever in 2012 is 3.35, his mark in that very 2012 season. Since then, Miller’s highest ERA is 2.64. In 2016 and 2017, he owned a 1.45 and 1.44 ERA respectively.
But now let’s circle back to last year and why I chose to omit it. Andrew Miller played in 37 games this past season and spent significant time on the disabled list. Those 37 games were least he’s played in since his 28-year old 2013 season in Boston where Miller pitched in 37 games as well.
Between being hurt and not on the field consistently, the 34 innings Miller pitched in 2018 are not enough for me to draw any heavy conclusions.
Financially this is where things get fun. Miller is extremely dominant but did have a rough year both health wise and statistically last season. He is also 34-years old. I think regardless of how many years the deal is for, Miller is worth $16 million a year and my prediction for years is three.
A bullpen with Andrew Miller and Kenley Jansen in it sounds so lethal and spending some extra money on Miller’s arm sounds worth it to me.