Erik Miller is a junior left-handed starting pitcher for the Stanford Cardinal. A probable second or early-third round pick, the hard-throwing southpaw already possesses the power necessary to have an impact in the Show.
Erik Miller 2019 MLB Draft Profile
For Miller’s 2018 sophomore season, he compiled 48 2/3 innings across 13 starts, allowing 43 hits and 23 walks with 52 strikeouts. All of this was good enough for an unimpressive 4.07 ERA and 1.36 WHIP.
The 2019 season is promising to be much better for Miller. In nine starts and 46 2/3 innings — nearly the same as his entire sophomore campaign — he has made notable progress by allowing fewer hits and getting more strikeouts, cutting his ERA in half. So far this season, Miller has allowed 34 hits and 24 walks. In addition, he has 57 strikeouts and a 2.12 ERA with a 1.24 WHIP.
Strengths of Erik Miller
No discussion of Erik Miller can be done without mention of his 97-mph fastball. Miller’s 6’5” frame will help him further develop that pitch and others as he continues his baseball career. Although control issues have haunted his collegiate and Cape Cod League performances, Miller has already shown signs of great improvement. Miller’s repertoire also includes two other serviceable pitches, a slider and changeup.
Weaknesses of Erik Miller
As with any hard-throwing pitchers, Erik Miller’s biggest weakness is control. Miller’s biggest command issues are most visible from his changeup. Although an inconsistent pitch, his changeup still has very much potential to be a strong option in his arsenal.
Rich Hill and Steven Matz are both left-handed, fourth-in-the-rotation guys. Hill possesses a similar build to Miller but is two inches shorter. Hill has had a successful career, but his career is also a template for the issues faced by hard-throwing pitchers. A series of control issues and injuries have, at times, hampered his career. Despite this, Hill continues to enjoy a long and satisfactory MLB tenure.
Matz, although not known traditionally as a power pitcher, displays the path Miller could take if he continues development of his other pitches. Both Miller’s slider and changeup could be executed in the same way Matz deploys those pitches — balls that dip in the zone.
Embed from Getty Images