May 25, 2024

The Cubs completed a trade with the Mariners late tonight, and a familiar face returns.

Miller was drafted in the fourth round by the Cubs in 2016, and he made his major league debut as the extra man in a doubleheader versus St. Louis on August 17, 2020 at Wrigley. He started the game as an opener and allowed two runs over two innings in a no-decision. After that game, he returned to the 2020 alternate site before being called up again for a second doubleheader against the Cardinals at Wrigley Field on September 5, pitching three innings of relief. Miller allowed only one run that day.

 

Pitcher Tyson Miller seeks spot in bullpen with Brewers

 

Miller returned to Iowa to begin the 2021 season, but was designated for assignment by the end of May. The Rangers claimed him on waivers, and he has since been on waivers roulette, being claimed by the Brewers in 2022, sold to the Dodgers in 2023, claimed off waivers by the Mets later that year, and claimed again by the Dodgers. Miller joined with the Mariners this season as a non-roster invite to Spring Training. He was promoted to the major leagues on April 8 and pitched for Seattle until May 10, when he was designated for assignment to make way for reliever Bryan Woo, who was returning from the injured list. Miller is out of options, so he couldn’t go back down to Triple-A without passing through waivers.

Miller, 28, did, however, pitch well during that month in Seattle. He pitched 11 2⁄3 innings in nine bullpen appearances, striking out 12 and walking only one. He had no record or saves, although he did record a hold and has an ERA of 3.09.

Miller has pitched twice at Wrigley Field, but never in front of fans. Hopefully, he’ll have several opportunity to do so this year.

Miller definitely provides another option for the Cubs’ struggling bullpen. His career figures (ERA of 5.91) are nowhere near as impressive as his numbers this season, but it’s clear that teams believe there is some talent there. They wouldn’t keep claiming him on waivers unless he was. Baseball America once ranked him as a top 15 prospect in the Cubs’ system. Maybe he’s finally got it together in Seattle this year.

Jake Slaughter, a fan favorite in the minor leagues, is returning to the Mariners. The Cubs selected Slaughter, 27, in the 18th round of the 2018 draft and has spent the majority of his career in the minor leagues, largely at third and second base. Last year, he advanced to Triple-A Iowa, where he batted.243/.340/.482 with 22 home runs and 16 steals in 104 games. Slaughter has had a great start to the season in Iowa, hitting.297/.392/.486 with five home runs and 10 steals in 32 games. However, Slaughter has yet to make a major-league roster, including the 40-man roster, and numerous minor league infielders are ahead of him on the organization hierarchy. So the Cubs decided to ship him out for a pitcher now rather than see him leave as a minor-league free agent at the end of the year.

This is a transaction that may benefit both players and clubs. Miller gets another shot to throw at Wrigley Field, and if he performs as well as he did in Seattle, he will see a lot of action. Slaughter joins an organization that has struggled to find quality middle infielders this season. He may eventually get to make his major league debut there.

The Cubs’ 40-man roster is now full, so a move will be required to make room for Miller.

 

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