Dodgers: Brad Miller Could Make the Opening Day Roster
The Dodgers made another one of their classic depth moves when they signed Brad Miller to a minor league deal on Thursday.
Since taking over the reins as General Manager, Andrew Friedman has made it his signature move to carefully construct the Dodgers roster beyond their active twenty-five man roster to ensure the Dodgers can overcome any injuries they are dealt. On Thursday the Dodgers made another classic Friedman move in signing Brad Miller to a minor league deal.
Miller is another super utility player who has played every position in his big league career with the exception of catcher. He joins Kiké Hernandez who has also accomplished the same feat although Kiké pitched in a game. Brad Miller brings some pop along with his versatility and averages around ten home runs a season with the exception being 2016 when he exploded for thirty home runs.
What gives Brad a legit shot at making the roster is that he bats left-handed and the Dodgers could use another infielder who hits from the left side of the plate on their active roster. With Kiké Hernandez and Chris Taylor battling for time at second base, the Dodgers could also use another super utility man since one of Taylor or Kiké will be playing second base nearly every game. Max Muncy could get time at second base but he will likely play as the everyday first baseman.
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Batting from the left side, Miller could give the Dodgers a platoon option at second base if Taylor and Hernandez struggle against righties in 2019. Kiké did improve tremendously against right-handed pitching in 2018 after being nearly unplayable against righties prior to the 2018 season. Taylor has been able to hit righties but given his regression in 2018, it will be interesting to see if his 2019 stats are closer to his 2017 or 2018 season.
Another reason that Brad Miller might crack the opening day roster is due to Corey Seager coming off of two surgeries. The Dodgers are going to take things slow with Seager and they will likely rest him often early on in the season. Miller has logged the majority of his big league innings at shortstop with over 3,000 innings coming at shortstop. While his defensive metrics are not good at shortstop, he gives the Dodgers a backup left-handed hitter for shortstop as well as second base.
Even if Miller misses out on making the opening day roster he will be ready and waiting in Triple-A where he could be recalled if an injury hits Kiké Hernandez or Chris Taylor. With Bryce Harper signing there should be a flurry of other small signings so it will be interesting to see who Andrew Friedman adds to the Dodgers for depth. Brad Miller was a nice under the radar move and could be pretty useful this season at the big league level.