(BaseballStL) -- It’s still months away from being decided, but it is going to take a lot more for Shelby Miller to be named Rookie of the Year.
There are a couple reasons, one he can control and one he can’t, why Miller is being chased from the early RoY chatter.
Obviously, Miller will need to pitch better than he did on Friday night.
The 22-year-old was chased from the series opener against the Oakland Athletics with two outs in the second inning after allowing five runs on six hits and two walks. He threw a total of 61 pitches, 38 for strikes, to 12 total batters faced.
In a previous post, I stated that the starting rotation is an area of concern for this team heading towards the trade deadline. Miller’s recent performance is one reason for that.
Miller was tagged for four runs on eight hits and a walk in 5.2 innings pitched against the Texas Rangers in his previous outing. He was forced to leave the start prior on June 17 after cramping in his leg after five innings pitched, and prior to that he allowed four earned runs in six innings pitched on June 12. He has pitched more than six innings in only two of his last 12 starts.
Despite those struggles, he has managed to have a 2.79 ERA this season (including Friday’s results). That’s an impressive ERA to have after 16 starts, but it’s at its highest since his first start of the year.
So what can he do to strengthen his case? Pitch better.
But he can’t control the other reason going against him because no matter how well he might pitch it will likely be overshadowed by what is happening in Los Angeles.
Like many fans around the league, I have been keeping tabs on Yasiel Puig -- especially for fantasy baseball purposes.
The Dodgers phenom was brilliant in spring training while batting .517 (30-for-58) with three home runs and 11 runs batted in 27 games. But he was sent down to Double-A Chattanooga for the start of the season.
It wouldn’t take long for Puig to advance levels. Instead of heading to the Triple-A level after hitting .313 with eight home runs and 37 RBI in 40 Double-A games, the Dodgers needed the outfielder at the big league level.
“Puigmania” officially arrived to Los Angeles on June 3, a month and a half before the All-Star game on July 16. Prior to Friday, Puig amassed a batting average of .427 (38-for-89), seven home runs and 16 RBI in his first 23 major league games.
Before we should mention Puig as a RoY favorite, we should realize that it’s quite possible he could make it to the All-Star team next month. Now that’s even more radical to think about...