Astros News

Astros: The Miley Chronicles Vol. 11: Overshadowed, Miley keeps grinding

bchancey
ST. PETERSBURG, FL - MARCH 31: Wade Miley #20 of the Houston Astros throws in the first inning of a baseball game at Tropicana Field on March 31, 2019 in St. Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by Mike Carlson/Getty Images)
ST. PETERSBURG, FL - MARCH 31: Wade Miley #20 of the Houston Astros throws in the first inning of a baseball game at Tropicana Field on March 31, 2019 in St. Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by Mike Carlson/Getty Images) /
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Wade Miley has been an example of consistency, dependability, and done the job he was signed to do. Get outs, limit runs, and provide the Astros with wins.

The Astros were the BIG WINNERS at the trade deadline and I couldn’t be more excited about what they’ve put together in the past three years. Jeff Luhnow is an absolute genius and along with his scouting department, deserve a ton of credit. By the way, the Astros now have three Aces…wait even I am doing it. Yes, I left out Wade Miley, and that’s what I want to focus on today.

I am not going to be comparing Wade Miley to Justin Verlander, Gerrit Cole or even newly acquired, future Hall of Fame pitcher, Zack Greinke. But, I do want to show how Miley deserves to receive as much press as those three pitchers.

As I write this, I know one thing for sure, I am hyper-focused on this way more than M. Miley. But since I started this journey, it sticks out to me more than it does most. I do have to give our fan base a lot of credit.

As Astros fans, we get accused of being bandwagon fans and only on board since 2017. Well, that I can tell you is ludicrous and an uneducated opinion in my mind.  Astros fans all over social media recognize that we wouldn’t have 70 wins if it weren’t in part due to Miley’s success in 2019.

I am only going to compare numbers to show that Miley is as deserving of credit as the other pitchers mentioned in this article. Again, this is not a time where I try to convince anyone that he is better than (insert name here).

Month to Month comparisons:

April/March:

  • Wade Miley: W/L 1-2 , 3.24 ERA, GS 6, 12 ER, 7 BB, 21K
  • Justin Verlander: W/L 4-1, 2.45 ERA, GS 7, 12 ER, 11 BB, 53K
  • Gerrit Cole: W/L 2-4, 3.95 ERA, GS 7, 19 ER, 15 BB,  65K
  • Zack Greinke: W/L 5-1, 3.27 ERA, GS 7, 16 ER, 8 BB, 46K

May:

  • Wade Miley: W/L 4-1 , 3.25 ERA, GS 6, 13 ER, 9 BB, 33K
  • Justin Verlander: W/L 4-1, 2.04 ERA, GS 5, 8 ER, 6 BB, 42K
  • Gerrit Cole: W/L 3-1, 4.13 ERA, GS 5, 13 ER, 3 BB,  47K
  • Zack Greinke: W/L 1-1, 2.14 ERA, GS 5, 8 ER, 3 BB, 27K

June:

  • Wade Miley: W/L 1-1, 3.76 ERA, GS 5, 11 ER, 15 BB, 26K
  • Justin Verlander: W/L 4-1, 2.25 ERA, GS 5, 18 ER, 9 BB, 52K
  • Gerrit Cole: W/L 3-0, 1.89 ERA, GS 6, 8 ER, 10 BB,  49K
  • Zack Greinke: W/L 3-1, 2.90 ERA, GS 5, 10 ER, 6 BB, 36K

July:

  • Wade Miley: W/L 3-0 , 2.03 ERA, GS 5, 7 ER, 9 BB, 26K
  • Justin Verlander: W/L 4-1, 2.25 ERA, GS 5, 8 ER, 5 BB, 49K
  • Gerrit Cole: W/L 4-0, 1.85 ERA, GS 5, 7 ER, 9 BB,  51K
  • Zack Greinke: W/L 1-1, 2.90 ERA, GS 5, 10 ER, 6 BB, 36K

As you can see, there are clear indicators that Wade Miley has held his own and at a consistent pace all season long. As I have stated before, he began the season with a then season-high nine straight starts of giving up only three runs or less. Miley has put himself in a position to contend for a big piece of the Astros Ace Pitching Pie.

His strongest months have been May and July for sure. Even though he doesn’t match JV or the Cole Train on K’s for the season, he’s still been more than effective. A majority of his strikeouts are on swings and misses, which is a huge indicator of the uptick in the use of his changeup, as well as his cutter.

While he doesn’t throw HUNDOs, (not sure of the spelling, a borrowed term from Geoff Blum), he does have the deceptive ability to use arm angle, spin rate, and a variety of pitches to keep even the most potent lineups in check.

While the baseball world is on absolute fire, because we now have three Aces on this team, I really hope they don’t take Miley lightly. He will definitely contribute in the postseason, the Astros need his ability to get out hitters to move through a tough AL bracket, and ultimately facing off against the LA Dodgers.

No matter who the opponent is, Wade Miley has proven his value and worth to this ball club. At $4.5 million, I’d say he is paying off higher dividends than some of those on other teams that signed for hundreds of millions of dollars.

This series may not be the most widely read publication on Climbing Tals Hill, but that’s OK by me. I know the value in covering Wade Miley and have grown to appreciate the players that aren’t going to get marque press. I believe Mr. Miley is more than OK with that as well. That’s what makes him one of my top three players on this current roster.

August 2, 2019, the Houston Astros defeated the Mariners 10-2 and Miley had much to do with the outcome. In the AL, the pitcher can’t hit, so when he contributes the way does, it has to get noticed. The game he pitched back at Minute Maid Park on the first night of Hall of Fame Weekend was superb. Despite giving up three hits, one which he yielded a home run, he still managed the game quite well.

Despite walking a season-high five batters, Miley won his 4th game in a row bringing his career record to 81-80, and 10-4 on the season. After the game, he mentioned that he didn’t have control of his cutter. The changeup is what saved him in the game and he had the confidence to throw it.

This, he said, builds up the other pitches. He did strike out five batters in the first three innings.  Before exiting the game, he would record his 6th strikeout. Collin McHugh and Joe Smith came in to finish the game, thus giving Miley the win.

You could tell that he was noticeably upset with himself after giving up the two runs, and his pitch count had climbed to 108. The grind was real tonight for Miley, getting of a couple runners on here and there, but he stranded most of Seattle’s runners without scoring, outside of the initial two runs. He did say that having the Astros offense hit six home runs in the game helped him when he didn’t seem to get the ball to go where he wanted it to.

Next. Astros: Gerrit Cole in the mix for the CY Young Award. dark

Wade Miley must be butter, because he’s on a roll. I look forward to seeing him compete the rest of the season and I believe he will pitch some key innings for the Houston Astros in the postseason. What a season he is having, and like I mentioned before, the Astros are getting a great bang for their buck.

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