… For this season, at least. The Arizona Diamondbacks gave up a lot in a trade to land Shelby Miller, but due to his woes and struggles, they’ve demoted him to Triple A Reno, hoping he’s capable of bouncing back from his terrible performances.
How bad has it been for Miller, who came in from the Atlanta Braves in a trade, with the Diamondbacks giving up Dansby Swanson, Aaron Blair and Ender Inciarte? He has the worst ERA for pitchers with over 60 innings of action this season, going 2-9 through 14 starts, posting a 7.14 ERA, averaging less than five innings per start. His WHIP is 1.745, and while he’s never been one to burn batters with his pitches, he’s down to just 6.5 strikeouts per nine innings, and a terrible 1.47 strikeout-per-walk ratio. Last season, the 25-year old rightie started 33 games, had a 3.02 ERA and made the All-Star game, looking like one of the more promising young pitchers in Baseball.
This isn’t something that’s catching Miller off guard. He seems surprised that the demotion hasn’t happened sooner. Things simply didn’t get better, despite the patience. He had a 7.37 ERA in the four starts prior to the All-Star game, has just two quality starts all season, and has never completed seven innings for the Diamondbacks, who had a lot of expectations heading into the season, but things haven’t been going their way.
Right now, they’re at the bottom of the NL West with a 38-52 record. The season began with A.J. Pollock out for almost the season, but most of their problems have been on the mound. Zack Greinke has struggled with pitching and injuries. Rubby De La Rosa has had injury problems, and the pitchers that remain, Patrick Corbin and Miller, have been bad. Corbin has had his moments, but a 4.94 ERA isn’t going to help the team in any way, not when he’s the best pitcher they have right now.
The Diamondbacks insist that they’re happy with the roster they have and don’t plan to start tearing this team down, hoping that their investments in the offseason produce something in the long term. However, they have traded Brad Ziegler to the Boston Red Sox, and might be entering sell mode if they get the right kind of offers.