Earlier today, reports indicated that David Robertson is seeking a four-year deal in the mold of Jonathan Papelbon’s $50MM contract, and the asking price on top lefty reliever Andrew Miller might not be much lower. Jason Mastrodonato of MassLive.com hears from a source that Miller is seeking “at least” a four-year deal and isn’t listening to any offers that have anything less than an “astounding” average annual value.
The Red Sox met with Miller’s camp this afternoon, Mastrodonato hears. Miller’s agent, Mark Rodgers of Frontline Athlete Management, told the Boston Globe’s Nick Cafardo that he saved his meeting with the Red Sox for last at this year’s GM Meetings (Twitter link).
Miller is coming off an elite season in which he posted a combined 2.02 with an incredible 103 strikeouts in 62 1/3 innings (14.9 K/9) between the Red Sox and Orioles. He dominated right- and left-handed hitters alike, averaging just 2.5 walks per nine innings with a ground-ball rate of 46.9 percent. That 14.9 K/9 mark is the highest in AL history for a reliever with more than 50 innings, as pointed out yesterday by ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick, who also reported that Miller is drawing interest as a potential closer.
Of course, Miller doesn’t come with a lengthy track record of this type of dominance. He posted excellent ERAs in 2012-13, but in shorter samples (a total of 70 1/3 innings in that time) and while being shielded from facing many right-handed hitters. Miller also battled his command until this season, as he entered the year with a career BB/9 rate of 5.3.
All of this as covered in greater detail in Tim Dierkes’ Free Agent Profile of Miller. Though his track record is a bit spotty, Tim projected that Miller’s historic season would be parlayed into a four-year, $32MM pact.