Miller was listed by manager Mike Shildt among a group of candidates who could close for the Cardinals going forward Wednesday, Jeff Jones of the Belleville News-Democrat reports.
Kwang Hyun Kim got the Cardinals' first save of the season but will be a starter moving forward. Miller has plenty of closer experience, saving a total of 59 games over the course of his career, though he's fallen off significantly from the dominant level he maintained for several seasons at his peak. His ERA has finished above 4.00 in each of the last two seasons, while his strikeout rate has fallen below 30 percent and his walk rate has risen above 10 percent. Still, if the Cardinals use a committee approach, Miller could get saves when a run of lefties comes up in the ninth inning.
Miller allowed two hits over a scoreless two-thirds of an inning in a loss to the Twins on Wednesday and now has a 5.40 ERA through his first two appearances of 2020.
The veteran southpaw was able to work around the pair of baserunners Wednesday, but he did allow an earned run on a hit and a walk in his first outing of the season Sunday against the Pirates. Miller was trending in the right direction as summer camp ended, although the fact he's been somewhat hittable early in the regular season evokes memories of an inconsistent 2019 campaign during which the 35-year-old produced a 4.45 ERA, his highest since 2011.
Miller has looked sharper with each subsequent summer camp appearance, Ben Frederickson of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports.
The veteran southpaw has clearly put the mysterious "lack of feel" that plagued him back in Grapefruit League action behind him, and he appears to increasingly resemble the pitcher who went 48-for-52 in save opportunities with the Yankees and Indians during the 2015-16 seasons. Frederickson notes Miller has generated three consecutive scoreless appearances in camp through Sunday after a shaky first outing in which he gave up two earned runs, recording multiple strikeouts in two of them. While Miller is mainly ticketed for eighth-inning duties once again this season, Anne Rogers of MLB.com reports Miller will certainly also be a closing option when Kwang-Hyun Kim, just named to the ninth-inning role Monday, isn't available.
Miller is one of several options for the Cardinals' closer role that's currently in flux, Anne Rogers of MLB.com reports.
A confluence of factors have murkied the Cardinals' closing situation for the time being: Jordan Hicks, who was already set to miss at least the first month of the season while working back from elbow surgery, has now opted out of playing in 2020 altogether; Giovanny Gallegos, the top candidate to at least open the season as the primary closing option, remains grounded in Mexico with no known arrival date; and Carlos Martinez, who performed well in the latter portion of last season by converting 24 of 27 save chances, has a strong preference to start and has performed well enough to earn the No. 5 role in the rotation. While Martinez may ultimately not have a choice in the matter if manager Mike Shildt determines he's the best man for the job, Miller is the one other option on the roster with a solid amount of experience in high-leverage situations. Miller was a stellar 36-for-38 in save opportunities for the Yankees back in 2015, and he followed it up with a 12-for-14 showing and 1.45 ERA the next season with New York and Cleveland. The one primary concern is the way the big left-hander often struggled in his first Cardinals campaign in 2019, when he posted a 4.45 ERA, 1.32 WHIP and recorded just six saves in 11 opportunities.
Miller threw live batting practice in Tuesday's summer camp session, Anne Rogers of MLB.com reports.
The veteran southpaw seems to be completely over the general discomfort he was feeling back in spring training. That's especially good news for the Cardinals bullpen, considering Miller is set to once again handle a significant amount of setup work and potentially even see some save opportunities while Jordan Hicks (elbow) remains out.
Miller is considered to be fully over the vague mechanical concerns he was experiencing during spring training, Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports.
Miller is one of those players that has unequivocally benefited from the compulsory time off over the last several weeks. Previously, the veteran southpaw had been plagued by what he could only term as a "lack of feel," but president of baseball operations John Mozeliak, who'd reported in early April that Miller was in an increasingly "good spot" when play was paused, now confirms the reliever is back to what the team executive labels as a normal maintenance program while working out at home.
President of baseball operations John Mozeliak confirmed Thursday that Miller left camp in a "good spot" and is continuing to work out consistently at home following the suspension of spring training, Anne Rogers of MLB.com reports.
The "lack of feel" that plagued Miller this past spring appears to be increasingly behind the veteran southpaw, who figures to play a prominent role once again in the Cardinals' bullpen whenever this regular season begins. However, it's worth noting the overall number of save opportunities Miller may be afforded could take a hit the longer the season takes to get underway, considering Jordan Hicks (elbow) could be ready for a return by some point in July.
Miller said Saturday that he's continuing to make good progress in his recovery from the mysterious left arm/hand injury that limited him to one Grapefruit League appearance before spring training was suspended, Rick Hummel of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports.
Miller never received an official diagnosis for his injury, but he noted that he noticed improvement after changing medications and undergoing more physical therapy. With the MLB season not expected to resume until at least mid-May, the veteran southpaw has a good chance to avoid a stint on the injured list to begin the campaign. He'll continue to go through a throwing program on his own until teams are cleared to reconvene for workouts.
Miller (arm) completed a bullpen session Wednesday and said afterward that he hopes to accelerate the pace of his rehab program in the coming days, Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports.
Miller indicated that he's feeling better physically, even though he has yet to receive a precise diagnosis for the arm issue that first surfaced last week. The reliever at least seems confident that he's not dealing with anything significant, as he recently underwent both blood testing and an MRI that ruled out conditions such as a brain tumor, carpal tunnel syndrome and thoracic outlet syndrome, per Mark Saxon of The Athletic. He's still expected to begin the season on the injured list, though Miller could still be ready to join the Cardinals bullpen at some point in April.
Miller (arm) is doubtful for Opening Day, Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports.
He had a difficult time warming up Monday and was unable to make a scheduled appearance. While he underwent a series of tests, there is still not a firm diagnosis as to what the veteran southpaw is dealing with that is affecting his feel for the ball. At the beginning of camp, Miller seemed like a potential option to get saves early this season, but that obviously won't happen now.
Miller, who had difficulty warming up Monday and didn't make his scheduled relief appearance, underwent a series of tests Tuesday for an unidentified arm issue that's affecting his feel for the ball, Anne Rogers of MLB.com reports.
Miller is still unable to pin down an exact description of what he's feeling off about his arm, but he does have a long laundry list of what he isn't experiencing. The veteran southpaw confirmed he doesn't feel any tingling, burning, soreness or pain, nor is he exhibiting symptoms of carpel tunnel or thoracic outlet syndrome. Nevertheless, Miller insists the sensation he currently has when throwing isn't "consistent" with what he's accustomed to when he's at full health. An MRI wasn't among the exams the 34-year-old underwent Tuesday, and for the moment, Miller is without a return timetable. "I've probably been dealing with it for awhile," Miller said. "There was no moment of pop, pull, 'That hurt,' or, 'That felt weird,' kind of thing. And then, OK, this is clear-cut, on this day I was fine, on this day I was not. It's probably been a pretty gradual thing."
Miller warmed up Monday but didn't get into the game against the Twins because he couldn't get a feel for the ball, Anne Rogers of MLB.com reports.
The news seems potentially ominous, but it's hard to say exactly what went wrong at this point. He said after the game that he wasn't physically hurt. The Cardinals are exploring what went wrong for the veteran lefty and will presumably follow up if an injury is discovered.
Miller allowed an earned run on a walk, two hit batsmen and a wild pitch over one inning in a Grapefruit League loss to the Mets on Friday. He struck out one.
The veteran reliever was making his first Grapefruit League appearance after being eased into the exhibition slate, and it turns out he had plenty of rust to work off. Miller promptly plunked Jake Hager and Tim Tebow to open the seventh inning and then advanced both runners with a wild pitch. Miller ultimately managed to get out of the jam with only one run allowed by virtue of a double play and inning-ending, three-pitch strikeout. The southpaw will be counted on again for plenty of eighth-inning work in 2020, and with Jordan Hicks (elbow) sidelined until at least mid-season, Miller could certainly see his fair share of save opportunities as well.
Miller, who's yet to make a Grapefruit League appearance, threw live batting practice on a back field of the team's spring training complex Tuesday after throwing a bullpen session Saturday, Anne Rogers of MLB.com reports.
The veteran left-hander doesn't have any injury concerns in play, but rather, the Cardinals are just opting to ease him into the rigors of spring with a long season ahead. Rogers reports Miller is the only pitcher on the staff who won't make an appearance during the first week of Grapefruit League contests as part of that load management strategy. "Based on how he recovers from the live today," manager Mike Shildt said. "Slowed for the fact that he's entering into I think his 14th year in the big leagues."
Miller (5-6) allowed four runs on two hits and a walk while striking out one in one-third of an inning to take the loss against the Cubs on Friday.
Miller also hit a batter. It was a horrendous start to what became a seven-run inning after Ryan Helsley had no better luck containing the Cubs' offense. Miller has now allowed five runs in his last two appearances, raising his ERA for the year to 4.50 with a 1.31 WHIP.
Miller struck out two batters in one inning against Arizona on Tuesday but he was charged with a blown save due to allowing a game-tying solo home run.
Miler was summoned in the ninth inning to protect a one-run lead but couldn't come through, serving up a solo shot to Ildemaro Vargas to push the game into extra innings. It was Miller's fifth blown save in 11 opportunities this season, though he does rank second in the National League with 28 holds.
Miller allowed a hit in a scoreless ninth inning Sunday, striking out one batter and earning the save over the Cubs.
Miller allowed a two-out single to Jason Heyward but still managed to close things out with relative ease for his first save since Aug. 19. He blew his first two save opportunities this month but has snagged six holds, giving him 28 on the year.
Miller (5-5) was credited with the win in an extra-inning victory over the Cubs on Thursday, firing a scoreless two-thirds of an inning during which he didn't allow any hits or walks and did not record a strikeout.
Miller was called on to snuff out a Carlos Martinez-authored threat in the bottom of the ninth, and he was mostly effective in doing so. The veteran southpaw did surrender an RBI groundout to Jason Heyward that knotted the game at 4-4 , a run charged to Martinez. By subsequently inducing an inning-ending flyout from Nico Hoerner, Miller indirectly positioned himself as the pitcher of record and subsequently notched his first victory since July 26, a string of 19 appearances prior to Friday. It's been an eventful month for Miller, who's recorded five holds and Thursday's win but also allowed five runs (four earned) across 5.2 innings over eight September appearances.
Miller was credited with his 25th hold in a win over the Rockies on Thursday, firing a scoreless two-thirds of an inning during which he issued a walk, uncorked a wild pitch, hit a batter and recorded two strikeouts.
Miller's rather eventful scoreless relief outing nevertheless garnered him yet another hold, although he needed Carlos Martinez to bail him out of a mess after the closer came on with two on and one out in the seventh. Miller put Nolan Arenado and Charlie Blackmon on base via a walk and hit by pitch, then advanced both runners courtesy of a wild pitch. The veteran southpaw may already have three holds in September, but he's been far from sharp, allowing four earned runs across the two innings he's logged over four appearances.
Miller could be a candidate for the closer's role to open the 2020 season if Carlos Martinez is able to secure a spot in the starting rotation during spring training, Anne Rogers of MLB.com reports.
The left-handed veteran has plenty of ninth-inning experience, having recorded 58 saves over 71 opportunities across the last six seasons. However, Miller only served as a closer in an extended capacity during one of those years, a memorable 2015 campaign in which he converted 36 of 38 save chances for the Yankees. Miller could end up in a ninth-inning platoon with John Gant or Giovanny Gallegos over the first few months of the 2020 season if Martinez returns to starting and Jordan Hicks (elbow) isn't available until midseason, as expected.
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|2011||AAA-Pawtucket Red Sox||65.0||13||12||0||3||3||0||61||35||42||2.49||1.185|
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