Angels Sign Justin Miller to Minor League Deal

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Updated: November 12, 2016

After electing free agency from the Rockies in October, right-handed reliever Justin Miller has been signed by the Angels to a minor league contract. By signing this deal, Miller will get the chance to fight for a bullpen spot during Spring Training.

Even though this transaction may seem minor, he could potentially be on the Angels’ Opening Day roster.

Born and raised in California, Miller played college baseball at Fresno State University, where he won the 2008 College World Series championship.

After a successful college season, he was picked in the 16th round of the draft by the Rangers, but didn’t make his major league debut until six years later as a member of the Tigers. He had his most appearances with the Rockies, pitching in 74 games through two seasons.

What does Miller have to offer for the Angels? He is 29 years old and has an awful career ERA of 4.99, which is why he doesn’t look like a significant pickup to the human eye. Although his ERA seems really high, remember that he pitched many games at Coors Field, one of the toughest pitcher’s parks in the game.

After taking a deeper look at Miller, there are some positives to talk about. First, he possesses a career SIERA of 3.64, which is “above average” according to Fangraphs. For those that do not know what SIERA is, it is a statistic that explains how well a pitcher actually pitched in the past couple seasons. Second, he strikes out a lot of batters.

With an impressive career K/9 of 8.97, he definitely knows how to use his fastball/slider combo to get strikeouts. Lastly, he is good at shutting down right-handed batters, who have a batting average of .237 against him throughout his career.

Overall Consensus of the Pickup: Even though Miller is signed only to a minor league deal, expect to see him in an Angels uniform sometime next season. He will have more motivation to pitch well being in the Angels organization, and because of this change, his numbers should improve. Although he might not seem like an impact player, he can bring pitching depth to a bullpen that needs help.

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