Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
Much of free agency for the Los Angeles Dodgers this offseason has centered around starting pitching, with the likes of Clayton Kershaw, Shelby Miller and Noah Syndergaard each signed to a one-year contract for the 2023 season.
Whereas Kershaw and Syndergaard helped round out the starting rotation, Miller is expected to pitch out of the bullpen. He returned to the Majors this past season as a relief pitcher for the San Francisco Giants.
A former first-round draft pick of the St. Louis Cardinals, Miller converted to reliever at the midway point of the 2019 season. He was an All-Star in 2015 but largely struggled since that year with the Atlanta Braves.
As Miller looks to build off a successful showing with the Giants, he already has started throwing bullpen sessions at Camelback Ranch with Dodgers assistant pitching coach Connor McGuiness overseeing those, and is in communication with pitching coach Mark Prior, per Mike DiGiovanna of the L.A. Times:
Miller has begun throwing bullpen sessions with assistant pitching coach Connor McGuiness at the team’s spring training complex in Phoenix and is in constant phone contact with pitching coach Mark Prior.
Miller made just four appearances for Giants, and didn’t allow a run in the first three. He then gave up five runs in his final game of 2022. Along with Syndergaard, Miller looks to become next to benefit from working with Dodgers pitching coaches.
There appears to be a strong base to build off, as the 32-year-old struck out 14 of 30 batters over his four appearances for San Fransisco. Furthermore, Miller went a combined 2-4 with a 2.87 ERA and 1.11 WHIP while pitching at the Triple-A level this past season for the New York Yankees and Giants organizations.
Shelby Miller injuries
Part of Miller’s struggles during his career can be traced to injuries. In April 2016, Miller jammed his right hand/fingers into the mound at Petco Park after delivering a pitch, he underwent Tommy John surgery in 2017, dealt with right elbow inflammation the following year and opted out of the 2020 season due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
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