By The Baseball Beginnings Guy
February 15, 2012
Ron Miller’s got raw power. I wrote over the summer that this guy has the bat speed to kill a guy and I’m right.
I was standing alongside the first base dugout with a bunch of other guys Saturday when he cut loose a swing and rifled a foul ball thataway. I mean, this ball was ON YOU. At first, Miller smiled, I am sure he was thinking, either, a) oh crap, I killed a scout, or b) if I killed a scout, maybe it’s one who doesn’t like me, or c) Nobody hurt? Then it’s all good.
But wait, there’s more. A pitch or two later, he fouled another one off the light tower. Literally, the glass from the broken light bulb showered down upon us. It was as close to The Natural as I’ll ever get, so I’d like to thank Ron for that. I sort of felt like hobbling around the complex and pumping my fist in the air, but resisted the temptation. The guy next to me was actually shaking broken light bulb bits out of his air. It was awesome, thanks for the memories.
If the rotting outfield signage is any indication of MLB’s commitment to the upkeep of its wonderful Academy, I’m sure that bulb will be replaced sometime in the year 2018, at which point, Ron might be mashing in the majors and the Academy will be watching him in that big screen in the conference room and putting his name in all its press releases. It is wise never to walk away from raw, plus, plus, right-handed power.
Back to the scouting. Miller’s body looks a lot trimmer. I’ve seen the underground video of him jump roping and lifting weights – I think he ought to take that jump rope out to the on-deck circle in front of all the scouts who go to see him and jump. Do it. Show them the feet are enough for first base because the question they are all asking is what position are you going to play? Miller took ground balls for probably the first and last time at shortstop and his hands were fine. His feet were completely adequate for first. His arm is enough for first. Hey, guess what? From what I saw, I think if he put his mind and body to it, he could train himself to play third, though most people would tell him his feet don’t work well enough for that and he’ll never get the chance. I say, get the jump rope, and check back in a few years. At the very least, the guy can play first base in the National League, so I think he’s helped dispel the notion that he’s an AL or nothing guy. That’s a big step ahead at this stage of his career.