There’s no sense in talking about the Shelby Miller trade again; it’s been done a million times.
With that awful trade aside, Miller’s stat line four starts into the year has been troubling. He is 0-1 with an 8.59 ERA, batters are batting .295/.403/.590 against him and hasn’t even made it out of the third inning in either of his last two starts. We’re now officially in the territory where serious concern is merited.
Miller could be in the midst of a serious regression, and this isn’t exclusive to this season either. Through the first two months of last season, Miller had a 1.48 ERA after ten starts. Pretty dominant, right? But the next four months saw him record a 3.77 ERA over 23 starts. That’s still solid, but it’s not something you would trade your top two prospects for.
In 2014, while Miller was with the Cardinals, he went 10-9 with a 3.74 ERA. Again, good but not great. However, the advanced analytics indicate he may have been the beneficiary of some good luck and a solid Cardinals team around him. He had a 97 ERA+ and 4.54 FIP. These statistics are remarkably below-average.
Miller hasn’t truly endured success through a full season since 2013, when he went 15-9 with a 3.06 ERA.
Also, take this into account: The Cardinals and Braves are two teams that typically know what they’re doing in respect to prospects. They are both teams that have tremendous success in breeding homegrown stars while eschewing high payrolls. Each of them ridded themselves of Miller.
So Diamondbacks fans may soon have to accept this reality: Shelby Miller just isn’t that good.