The board set up pretty nicely for the Dodgers in the 2020 MLB Draft, and they took advantage of it by taking Louisville right-handed pitcher Bobby Miller with the 29th selection.
Miller ranked 9th on my final Big Board and was actually the first prospect I profiled in the draft profile series. Here’s some of what I wrote:
“Miller’s calling card is a mid-90s fastball with lots of life. It has boring and sinking action to righties and runs away from lefties. It also has flirted with triple-digit velocity in his shorter outings. He backs it up with a slider/cutter hybrid that misses plenty of bats. It’s a pitch that’ll need to be refined at the next level, but it could be a good one. He also employs a splitter/changeup hybrid that I liken to Tony Gonsolin‘s. It isn’t that good, but it at least gives him a usable third pitch in hopes of neutralizing lefties. He also has a traditional changeup that’s a low-80s pitch. You’ll notice in the videos below that Miller’s mechanics aren’t the smoothest. He experienced command/control issues in his early college days, but has since figured out how to repeat his delivery well enough that he can be projected as a starter. The long arm action is more worrisome than any of the funk in his delivery. But thanks to a prototypical starter’s frame, he’s able to maintain his velocity deep into his starts.”
The stuff is legit. There is some concern about the delivery, but there’s no better player development department to try to get the most and best out of him. Here’s what others said about the pick:
The @Dodgers get an explosive fastball at pick No. 29. RHP Bobby Miller (Louisville) joins teammate Reid Detmers in Round 1. Miller’s FB sat at 96 and touched 99 mph in 2020 🔥 @MLBNetwork pic.twitter.com/GYWk4bT1Jz— BaseballCloud (@BaseballCloudUS) June 11, 2020
Bobby Miller was a fast-riser this season and for good reason. The stuff is legit. 6-5, 220 with mid-to-high 90s FB with great sink and run. Hard, stiff slider 87-88, above average CH. Developing CB. Needs put-away pitch.— Joe (@JoeDoyleMiLB) June 11, 2020
Player Comp: Chris Carpenter#Dodgers
Miller has a pretty high ceiling for a college pitcher taken at the end of the first round. There’s reliever risk, but if the Dodgers’ PD can work its magic, there’s a No. 2/3 starter there.
There was talk before the draft that he could be an under-slot signing. We’ll see if that ends up being the case. If so, the Dodgers can use the savings to take a prep player or two you know they’ll target during rounds 2-5.
Overall, I like this pick a lot, even if he wasn’t the top player remaining on my board. The draft concludes tomorrow, and the Dodgers have five picks in the four remaining rounds.