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The people you meet while watching Andrew Miller.

I like people watching, and I suspect I’m not alone. People watching is the only reason anyone likes going to IKEA, and the reason you want to leave IKEA as quickly as possible. It turns out folks can be terrible in small but significant ways when parenting while picking out furniture. People, when they don’t know they are being observed, do all sorts of funny, kind, and awful things. Often they just do human things, like take soda refills they didn’t pay for, or pick up things for a stranger who has dropped them without being asked, or suddenly smirk when they’ve remembered something funny but private. Other people are just like us.

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October 25, 2016 6:00 am

Baseball Therapy: Stop, Miller Time.


Russell A. Carleton

Can't stop Miller Time.

And suddenly, Andrew Miller is the toast of the baseball world. Miller, whose previous claims to fame included being “the guy picked right before Clayton Kershaw”, won the ALCS MVP award by turning the clock back to the 1970s and (get this!) pitching multiple innings in relief, and coming into the game in the (gasp!) fifth and sixth inning.

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He's more like Mariano Rivera ... just not THAT Mariano Rivera.

Andrew Miller, MVP of the American League Championship Series, has had quite a postseason:

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Terry Francona's bullpen is the toast of Cleveland.

Ryan Merritt is an unknown; a top percentile athlete; a playoff starter. Ryan Merritt is a means to an end.

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After their deal for Jonathan Lucroy falls through, the Indians pivot and snag their new closer out of the Bronx.

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May 18, 2012 3:00 am

Pebble Hunting: The Best Pitches Thrown This Week


Sam Miller

Andrew Miller makes Jose Molina look like a worse hitter than usual, David Price makes Nick Swisher's head explode, Chris Davis makes baseball look easy (or hard), and more.

Here are the three best pitches of the week, or rather some number near three in some period of time that is roughly week-like. 

3. Andrew Miller, slider, against Jose Molina
There's a tendency to judge these pitches on how the batter reacts to them. This seems like a flaw in the judging, but maybe this is actually just right. Without being in the pitcher's head, we don't really know whether the pitch was exactly as he intended it. A two-seamer with nasty movement can look an awful lot like a two-seamer that gets away from him. Even if he did execute his pitch perfectly, exactly as he intended it, we can't know without being the hitter whether it was actually a difficult pitch to hit. Brian Moehler probably executed a lot of garbage pitches exactly as he intended them, as slightly less-garbagey garbage. Our understanding of the value of pitch sequencing is primitive. Catchers' targets are often inexact suggestions, or they allow for the movement of the pitch, so it's hard to say the pitcher hit his target exactly right. Our view of these pitches on TV is misleading and inconsistent. So we're left with the one thing we can clearly observe. 

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June 30, 2005 12:00 am

The Class of 2006


Bryan Smith

After no pitchers were picked in the top five of this year's draft, hurlers could return with a vengeance in '06. Here's a look at the cream of the upcoming college class.

"Each draft is so unique that I would have expected there to have been a year somewhere along the line where the overwhelming strength was position players," Toronto Blue Jay scouting director Jon Lalonde recently told Rich Lederer. Simply put, every year is a crapshoot, and every year we see something different.

Next year is likely to be much different. Rumors are that the 2006 draft class might include the best five collegiate pitchers of all-time. The draft class offers no clear-cut top position player, opening the door to five college pitchers going in the first seven or eight picks. While this is all purely speculative--there's lots of baseball between now and next June, starting with summer circuits like the Cape Cod League and Team USA tryouts--an introductory course on the group couldn't hurt.

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