Chart courtesy of Fangraphs (Explanation)
Earned His Tiger Stripes: Miller 6.0 IP, 4 H, 2 Ks, 0 ER, .226 WPA
AP Photo/Duane Burleson
The last time a Tigers' pitcher got a win in their first major league start was September 2nd, 2002 when Andy Van Hekken pitched a complete-game shutout of the Tribe at Comerica Park. Van Hekken was the kind of pitcher that never was in the spotlight on his way to a humble Major League career; He was actually a PTBNL in a deal that sent the speedy Brian Hunter to the Mariners.
Tonight I was excited to see the debut start for Andrew Miller, though I went into it with cautious optimism. From what was seen and heard, Miller had all of the tools a pitcher needs to be successful at the big-league level. Tonight he came through in a big way, although the Tigers' offense stole the show in this one -- one day removed from scoring only three runs in two games against Boston.
Miller only gave up four hits to the Cardinals through six innings, allowing no runs and throwing 62 strikes in 94 pitches. This performance was about as good as we could have asked for -- even though the offense ensured that even a below-average start would secure a win.
Great bounce-back game this evening. The hitters broke out of their funk from yesterday, and we got to see glimpses of the future of the Tigers' rotation.
Up Next: Tomorrow night vs. Cardinals, 7:05 pm EST