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Sunday, June 16, 2024

Damian Miller made bigs for decade: Baseball Profiles

Damian Miller 1990 Elizabethton Twins card

It took Damian Miller a little longer than he'd hoped to be drafted in June 1990. But he was just happy to start his career, he told told The La Crosse Tribune then.

"Waiting for the call was kind of long and frustrating," Miller told The Tribune, "but I hope it'll pay off in the end."

For Miller, it did pay off, though after another long wait. He'd go on to make the majors in his eighth pro season, then stay in the bigs for more than a decade.

He'd also become an all star and win a World Series with Arizona.

Miller's career began that June in 1990, taken by the Twins in the 20th round of the draft out of Viterbo University in Wisconsin.

Miller started with the Twins at rookie Elizabethton. He hit a home run in his second professional at batsecond professional at bat. He made single-A Kenosha for 1991, then high-A Fort Myers and, briefly, AA Nashville in 1993.

Miller made AAA Salt Lake in 1995. Then, in August 2997, he made Minnesota. He saw 25 games and hit two home runs, one a grand slam.

Miller moved to the Diamondbacks in the expansion draft. He saw 57 games that year and 86 in 1999. He hit .270, with 11 home runs.

He saw 100 games in 2000 and then a career-high 123 games in 2001 as he helped the Diamondbacks to the World Series.

Miller went 2 for 4, with three runs scored in the Game 6 win. But he also drew notice for dropping three popups in a Game 3 loss.

"I'm not the first guy it's happened to and I won't be the last. I just happened to have it happen in the World Series," Miller told ESPN after Game 3. "In February, I guess I'll have to work on popups."

Miller returned for 2002 and made the All-Star team. He moved to the Cubs for 2003 in a trade and then helped the Cubs to the NLCS.

"I've been lucky," Miller told The Chicago Tribune October 2003 of his work with the Diamondbacks and Cubs. "That's all it is. Good pitchers like that make catchers look good. I've been fortunate to be able to handle those guys and get some respect from them."

Miller moved to the Athletics for 2004, then the Brewers for 2005, 2006 and 2007. He last played for the Brewers in 2007, 58 games. He hit .237, including a two-home-run game in July, to end his career.

Damian Miller 1990 Elizabethton Twins card

1990 Minor League Tally 
Players/Coaches Featured:4,382
Made the Majors:1,413-32.3-X
Never Made Majors:2,969-67.7%
5+ Seasons in the Majors:575-X
10+ Seasons in the Minors:354

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