Found June 05, 2012 on
Fox Sports Arizona:
PHOENIX -- When rookie left-hander Wade Miley was the last man to make the Opening Day roster as a long reliever, the Diamondbacks probably didn't expect he'd become their most effective starting pitcher through the season's first two months and an early contender for NL Rookie of the Year.
As much success as Miley has had on the mound, though, he has had about as much in the batter's box, last week setting a D-backs franchise record by extending his hitting streak to eight games.
"He has a knack for it," manager Kirk Gibson said. "He has a very good ability in that area. It gives you options when you have a pitcher that can handle the bat."
While Miley is hitting a staggering .429 (9-for-21) with nine hits, most among pitchers in the league, his offensive numbers are not towering. He has two runs, one RBI and one extra-base hit, a double. But during his hitting streak, which topped Dan Haren's previous club record, Miley has tallied three sacrifices, three leadoff hits and reached scoring position eight times. Moreover, he has kept innings going with two-out hits on three occasions.
"I just don't want to give myself up as an out," Miley said. "Whether it's getting a guy over to second base in scoring position for the top of the lineup or extending an inning with two outs -- you get a hit or somehow find a way on -- you get back to the top of your lineup you never know what can happen."
Added Gibson: "There are so many intangibles that go along with the game. That's why (pitchers' hitting) is one of the things I've focused on."
Miley's determined approach at the plate comes from organizational orders. Miley recalled playing for Double-A Mobile when Gibson took over the D-backs on July 1, 2010. It wasn't long before word came down that pitchers would be expected to swing it effectively. Accordingly, Miley added a little hitting to his offseason routine.
Mobile was Miley's first stop that included batting since college, where he only did a little hitting. Miley made gradual improvements as a hitter, notching his best numbers last season, with a .226 average overall, including .308 with Triple-A Reno, and six RBI.
"He was smart enough to take it to heart and put the work in when he was in Double-A," Gibson said. "When you talk about developing players, that's a good sign."
Add what Miley's been able to do at the plate to his success on the mound -- six wins and a 2.72 ERA, both NL rookie bests -- and it's not crazy to think Miley could be the D-backs' lone representative at the All-Star Game in July, particularly with the likes of Chris Young and Justin Upton struggling.
Nobody's crowning Miley the next NL Silver Slugger but the fact he's been able to contribute offensively has been a nice complement to the reliability he's provided to a rotation that has struggled to stay consistent.
"When a pitcher gets a hit, it's a bonus," Miley said. "You're not expected to. I mean, I expect myself to and I'm sure the other four guys in the rotation do. We're not just going to go up there and take strikes."
The other starters certainly do expect to hit as well, and they even have a monthly competition complete with an intricate points system and dinner on the line. The ringleader of it all, Miley says, is reigning NL Silver Slugger Daniel Hudson.
Hudson, who said he hadn't picked up a bat in about five years when he was traded from the White Sox to the D-backs in July 2010, has been impressed by Miley's impact at the plate so far and believes the rookie is just keeping it simple.
"He's obviously got an idea of what he's doing," Hudson said. "I think he's kind of got the same approach I do, and I don't really have an approach. I just go up there thinking 'see the ball, hit the ball.'"
Miley confirmed the approach in nearly the same words and said it is a little easier for pitchers than hitters because opposing pitchers typically aren't throwing their best stuff to fellow hurlers.
"They aren't trying to dot up and get nasty on you," Miley said. "They're just trying to throw quality strikes and I'm trying to put a bat on the ball."
Miley also said he watched Hudson help his own cause at the plate last season and wanted to emulate that success. That appears to have worked so far, and Miley hasn't had to buy dinner for the rotation yet.
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
TAKE YOUR SHOTS
Diamondbacks managing partner Ken Kendrick had some harsh words and criticism for two of his team's top players.
PHOENIX Diamondbacks rookie left-hander Wade Miley added Wednesday night to whats been an incredible season so far, though he seems to be the only one oblivious to the degree of his success. He's still just happy to be here.
"I was just excited from Day 1 when (manager Kirk Gibson) told be me I was going to be on the team," Miley said Wednesday night. "I didn...
PHOENIX -- Diamondbacks right fielder Justin Upton was out of the lineup for a second conseuctive day Wednesday and said before the game he is still displeased with his benching amid ongoing struggles.
"I'm never happy about not being in the lineup," Upton said. "I'm still not happy about it. But with the day off today (and) a day off tomorrow, I don't...
Arizona Diamondbacks shortstop Stephen Drew will join Triple-A Reno this week for what could be the last rehabilitation stop in his comeback from a brutal ankle injury nearly 11 months ago.
Manager Kirk Gibson says Drew will join the Aces for their game Thursday night at Reno. Gibson says how long Drew will be with Reno will be determined by what progress he makes there.
Things have not gone well for Justin Upton this season. After posting an MVP-caliber season in 2011, Upton has struggled to reach the same level this year. The situation worsened on Tuesday, when Arizona Diamondbacks’ Managing General Partner Ken Kendrick criticized Upton’s performance so far this season. Later that night, Upton left out of the Diamondbacks’ starting lineup...
Justin Upton sat for the second straight game, a 6-1 Arizona victory over Colorado on Wednesday, a day after he was criticized by Diamondbacks managing partner Ken Kendrick, who called Upton an "enigma" and said he should be more consistent by this point in his career. "I agree 100 percent," Upton said of Kendrick's critique. "I want to be consistent...
Hendricken Alum Evan Marzilli Drafted in MLB 2012 Draft
June 5, 2012- Former Hendricken baseball player Evan Marzilli was drafted yesterday by the Arizona Diamondbacks in the 8th round. Evan became the 1st RI player to be drafted in this year’s draft. He joins fellow Rhode Islander Anthony Meo on the Diamondbacks. Evan currently attends South Carolina and is in his junior year...
The Arizona Diamondbacks hope they're on the verge of turning things around at home.
Coming off one of their most productive games of the year, the Diamondbacks have a chance to win consecutive home series for the first time this season Wednesday night against the Colorado Rockies.
One night after being held to six hits in a 4-0 series-opening loss to Colorado, Arizona (26...
Paul Goldschmidt homered and drove in three runs while extending his hitting streak to 14 games, Wade Miley pitched eight sharp innings and the Arizona Diamondbacks rolled to a 6-1 win over the Colorado Rockies on Wednesday night.
The Diamondbacks beat up the Rockies in the middle game of the series, getting a season-high 17 hits Tuesday night. They kept swinging and connecting...
PHOENIX -- The Diamondbacks are counting on Stryker Trahan having a longer run than his namesake.
Trahan, whom the D-backs selected in the first round of the 2012 draft Monday with the 26th overall pick, was named after the Burt Reynolds TV character B.l. Stryker, a carefree private eye who lived on a boat in south Florida. That showed aired for one season.
Trahan, a catcher, hit...
Ian Kennedy matched his career high with 12 strikeouts in six innings, Jason Kubel drove in five runs and the Arizona Diamondbacks roughed up the Colorado Rockies in a 10-0 victory Tuesday night.
Gerardo Parra had a solo homer among his four hits, Aaron Hill hit a two-run shot and the Diamondbacks had a season-high 17 hits after being shut out by Colorado the night before.
Tuesday's second day of the MLB first-year player draft saw the Diamondbacks select five pitchers, four outfielders, three infielders and two catchers. The D-backs selected Lafayette, La., catcher Stryker Trahan with their first-round pick on Monday.
We placed an emphasis on drafting quality position players early in this years draft and we accomplished just that over the first...
Ken Kendrick, Diamondbacks managing partner, recently called out two of the team’s stars. Justin Upton and Stephen Drew were lambasted by Kendrick on XTRA 910 AM in Phoenix. In Upton’s case, Kendrick criticized him for being inconsistent.
“He’s certainly not the Justin Upton that he has been in the past and that we would expect of him. He’s 24 years old and it’s time...
PHOENIX -- Every time it looks like the Diamondbacks are poised to put together a streak, it seems a maddeningly anemic offense comes along to suppress any momentum on which the team could capitalize.
Any momentum that might have carried over from a road trip that ended Sunday with the D-backs' third win in four games evaporated Monday when the D-backs failed to score a run...