Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
The Los Angeles Dodgers have established somewhat of a pipeline with the University of Louisville over the past several years by drafting the likes of Will Smith, Bobby Miller and Dalton Rushing.
Smith was taken No. 32 overall in the 2016 MLB Draft, the Dodgers then picked Miller at No. 29 in 2020, and most recently selected Rushing in the second round of the 2022 Draft.
Smith made his MLB debut in 2019 and has become one of the top catchers in the sport. Meanwhile, Miller just joined the Dodgers last week for his first experience at the Major League level.
He did so with Smith behind the plate, which Miller told Kirsten Wastson of SportsNet LA, was one of his goals:
“Obviously you’ve got to trust a guy like that. He’s been here for a while, he’s been up here obviously a lot longer than I have and he’s gone up against some of the best guys. He knows what he’s doing out there. Like I said, I put all my trust in him. When I got drafted by the Dodgers, that was one of my goals, was to pitch to him in the big leagues. I’m really happy in my debut I got to throw to him.”
The Miller-Smith battery amounted to holding the Atlanta Braves to just one run one four hits and one walk over five innings. The Dodgers’ top pitching prospect flashed his patented electric fastball and also showed good command of secondary pitches that were key to collecting five strikeouts.
Following the Dodgers’ win, Miller credited Smith for his pitch calling and noted putting complete trust in the backstop. Miller added that entailed not shaking off Smith once in the start.
The 24-year-old figures to again throw to his fellow Louisville product on Monday, as Smith is expected to start at catcher in the series opener against the Washington Nationals.
Bobby Miller joined rare group of Dodgers rookies
Miller became just the 13th pitcher in L.A. Dodgers franchise history to earn a win in his MLB debut. The last to do so had been José De León on September 4, 2016. Prior to De León, Kenta Maeda accomplished the feat on April 6 of the 2016 season as well.
Before that year, it was Nathan Eovaldi to earn a win in his debut on August 6, 2011.
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