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SoCal ProCase Spotlight: RHP Max Miller


Jack Shannon
San Diego Area Scout

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FULLERTON, CA. - Max Miller and his anything but straight 87 mph fastball showcased well, as his three-pitch offering showed next level ability and intriguing Trackman metrics. The Cathedral Catholic right-hander has only tossed 9 ⅔ career varsity innings across two seasons: 2.17 ERA, 1.56 WHIP, 125 BAA, 18 K, 11 BB. The right-hander showed enough projection and stuff that he didn’t stay off the radar long, committing to Arizona State. Miller looks the part of a college right-handed pitcher, offering physical projection and quality TrackMan metrics. 



 

TrackMan metrics showed that Miller possesses a unique fastball, one with extreme run and slight ride. Along with his anything but straight fastball, Miller’s breaking ball arsenal of a curveball and slider play well off each other with conventional break and average to slightly above-average spin metrics. With 67 representatives from 22 MLB Organizations in attendance, some teams 2-3 deep, and the talent on the SoCal ProCase roster, Miller set out to show that his 23rd overall ranking and 7th overall right-handed pitcher ranking in California is for real and worthy of MLB scouting interest heading into the 2021 draft despite his lack of experience on the mound. 

Body: 6-foot-3, 210 pounds. Large, sturdy ideal pitches frame for a starting pitcher. Looks the part of a next level starting pitcher with his imposing frame. Strength toning and the Sun Devil weight program will greatly benefit the young right-hander. 

Mechanics: Right-handed pitcher. Miller sets up on the first base side of the rubber with a high ¾ arm slot. Arm path and quickness shows good speed and snap with room for more. Keeps his body compact and repeats his motion consistently. Balanced head will help his short-term and long-term command. Hides the ball well with a short arm swing in the back before loosely and quickly firing his arm down in the front. Curveball passed the eye test with sharp biting vertical action down in the zone with conventional right-handed look and feel. Slider couples well with the curveball with more horizontal break and a tick higher velocity. Release height and release side are very consistent and repetitive, posting elite TrackMan data results.


Fastball: Release speed averaged 87.1 mph, minimum release speed of 85.9 mph and a maximum release speed of 88.6 mph. Spin rate averaged 2232 RPM (revolutions per minute), minimum 2094 RPM and maximum 2324 RPM. Spin rate average is average at the 2019 MLB and NCAA level and in the top 15% at the High School level. Induced vertical break average of 15.9 (64th percentile) shows that his fastball has slight ride and the induced horizontal break average of 15 (93rd percentile) shows that his fastball has extreme run. These two metrics show that his fastball has slight ride and extreme run, which should allow him to pitch to all parts of the zone with effectiveness; side-to-side and up-and-down. 


Slider: Release speed average of 76.3 mph, minimum release speed of 74 mph and a maximum release speed of 77.2 mph. Spin rate averaged 2685 RPM, minimum 2567 RPM and maximum 2868 RPM. Spin rate average is in the top 25% at the 2019 MLB and NCAA level, top 10% at the 2019 High School level. Induced vertical break average of 1.9 and horizontal break average of -14. Slider tilt ranging from 8:45 - 10:00 around the ideal average tilt range of 9:45 for a 2019 MLB slider. 

Curveball: Release speed averaged 71.3 mph, minimum release speed of 70.1 mph and a maximum release speed of 72.4 mph. Spin rate averaged 2778 RPM, minimum 2713 RPM and maximum 2912 RPM. Spin rate is in the top 25% for the 2019 MLB level and in the top 10% for the NCAA and High School level averages. Induced vertical break average of -13.3 and induced horizontal break average of -15. Curveball tilt ranging from 7:15 - 8:00 right at the ideal average tilt range of 7:45 for a 2019 MLB curveball. 


Summary: Miller has the look and feel of a starting right-handed pitcher with potential to get through the line-up three times at the next level. Miller’s fastball is intriguing, as it has extreme run to it and slight or above-average ride to the pitch, enabling his fastball to be utilized to all parts of the zone. Curveball and slider break at the ideal tilt ranges for the pitch to play at the next level and will continue develop with velocity increase. Only threw one change-up in his ProCase showing, too small of a sample size to dissect but prior showings have shown that it has capability of being a quality fourth pitch. If Miller can continue to develop his three off-speed pitches and increase his velocity, he could have the stuff to become a frontline starter in the PAC-12 and see his name on draft lists as soon as 2021.




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