The Red Sox may have found a late-inning reliever in Andrew Miller
|05.12.12 at 10:58 pm ET|
For the first time in his career, and maybe his life, Andrew Miller has pitched three days in a row. The latest coming Saturday night in the Red Sox’ 4-1 win over the Indians at Fenway Park.
In the Sox’ latest win, Miller came on to pitch the seventh, needing 10 pitches (7 strikes) to get through a flawless frame.
Since being called-up to the Red Sox Miller has totaled five appearances, allowing two hits, no runs while striking out five and not walking a batter.
And, perhaps most impressive is the fact that along with his success has come efficiency. Miller has averaged just over 11 pitches per inning pitched, which is a great departure from his career average of almost 19.
“He’s much more efficient with his body and leg movements,” Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine explained after the win Saturday night. “You know, people who worked with him during his rehab … obviously he was pitching out of the bullpen so he got rid of the windup and he shortened his leg stroke so that is arm is in a consistent launching position every time, and that’s just quality – 94 [mph] with sink. And 88 [mph] slider, starts behind the left-handed hitter. It’s pretty good stuff. But it’s more efficient because his body is not in the way, I think.”
Miller has also seemed to taken to life as a high-leverage situation reliever. One which also doesn’t have to be babied when it comes to usage.
“I feel really good,” he said. “You expect your body to learn to adapt. I’ve started my whole career. So far it’s been a pleasant surprise to say the least. I’ve always felt I’ve recovered pretty well. I’ve always felt pretty good. The best example is starting on your bullpen day. We’re al out there trying to get outs.”
He later added, “You want to feel good for extended periods of time. You’re always going to have ups and downs. You just want to keep the good ones going as long as you can and get out of the downs as quick as you can. Right now everything feels pretty good, just trying to maintain that and remember what works and take it out there the next day.”
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