What is in Wade Miley's heart? And what does that have to do with Dallas Keuchel?
It wasn’t all that long ago that Wade Miley was one of the least interesting pitchers in baseball. On the stat sheet, his results and peripherals conspired to paint the picture of a steadfast second-division fourth starter, a sacrifice at the altar of the 162-game season. On the mound, Miley hunches into an indistinct figure, wearing an unrepentant expression; the shuffling feet of a delivery almost like an afterthought, as if an invisible pitch clock reached zero. It’s a performance designed to be forgotten, a middling opening act for a headline band that never takes the stage.
This season has marked the culmination of a life’s work of being Wade Miley, the experience and the attrition. Little, out of hand, has changed: he still throws the same four pitches—fastball-slider-curve-change—the same amount of the time at the exact same speed. He still strikes out a few batters less than average, gives up a few too many hits. He should be able to keep his head barely above water forever like this, starting the fourth game of the regular season for the 2025 equivalent of the 2017 Padres. Only, Wade Miley has stopped being boring; he’s become interesting in the worst possible way. Wade Miley can’t throw strikes. Well, he can throw strikes. But he also can’t.
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December 19, 2012 2:29 am
Notes from around the Caribbean Winter Leagues
It was an interesting night in the Dominican Winter League. This kid named Miguel Sano went 0-for-4 with four strikeouts. He must be terrible, right? Wait a minute. I'll search the internet and find some info on him. Oh, never mind. He hit 28 homers in Lo-A ball as a 19 year-old and those prospect geeks here at Baseball Prospectus are supposedly ranking him in the Top 25 of their upcoming Top 101 Prospects List. Must’ve been an off night. I also noticed that this guy named Manny had four hits in his game. Figured he must be in this top 101, too. He wasn’t. It turns out he's an older guy that debuted in the majors way before the invention of prospect ranking.