Granted, the organization’s top pitching prospect was expected to come up and produce — maybe with some bumps along the way.
Fortunately for Miller and the Dodgers, the 24-year-old rookie has shown none of the usual shakiness associated with young hurlers, and the steady way he’s gone about his work has impressed manager Dave Roberts.
It looks like Miller — with his blazing fastball and tight, devastating slider — may have supplanted veteran Noah Syndergaard in the starting rotation, something that both could and should be made official upon the latter’s return from the 15-day injured list with a blister.
Concerning how the Dodgers will manage the rookie going forward, Roberts said that he doesn’t see Miller facing an innings restriction this season, per The Athletic’s Fabian Ardaya.
Dodgers will have Bobby Miller pitch on Saturday. The plan for now is a bullpen game on Friday. Miller threw 112 1/3 innings in the minors last year, and Dave Roberts said he doesn’t anticipate Miller will have any sort of innings limit this season.
— Fabian Ardaya (@FabianArdaya) June 15, 2023
This is a departure from a strategy that the Dodgers have utilized in the past with young starters, most notably with Julio Urias.
Urias threw only 77 innings in his rookie season over 18 total appearances — and 15 starts — as he adjusted to the major leagues.
But one significant difference between Urias and Miller is that the former was only 19 years old when he made his MLB debut; and the most innings he’d ever thrown in a season prior to reaching the majors was the 87.2 he’d pitched as a 17-year-old in 2014.
Miller is much further along in that department and certainly seems capable of having a full workload right out of the gate.
And it looks like this season will indeed be the start of a great career for Miller in Dodger blue.
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