Tha Sports Junkies 101

Circle the Wagons: Tribe Shooting For Title in Miller Trade

Dennis Adair/Via


Cleveland sends prospects to Yankees for Andrew Miller

In a trade that seemingly came to fruition from out of nowhere, the Cleveland Indians have acquired Andrew Miller from the New York Yankees.  The Yankees will receive Indians’ top prospect Clint Frazier, as well as Justus Sheffield, Ben Heller, and JP Feyereisen.  New York has apparently gone into full-on sell mode after losing the first two games of a pivotal series against Tampa.  The Indians currently have a 4.5 game lead over the Detroit Tigers in the American League Central.  This move should basically guarantee that Cleveland wins the division.

One of the main pieces in the trade that sent Miguel Cabrera to Detroit, Andrew Miller was viewed as a total bust for years.  He could never put things together as a starting pitcher.  In 2013, the Boston Red Sox moved Miller to the bullpen on a full-time basis, and he thrived.  Miller has emerged as one of the most dominant relievers in baseball over the past few seasons.  In 69 career appearances with the Yankees, the southpaw has posted video-game numbers.  He has 177 strikeouts in only 107 innings to go with a 1.77 ERA since putting on pinstripes.  Miller gives Cleveland a shutdown closer that has experience pitching in the postseason.  Cody Allen will move to a set-up role for the Indians, which will give their bullpen additional depth.

The New York Yankees have been busy during trade season as usual, but their regime is not making typical moves.  After trading closer Aroldis Chapman last week to the Chicago Cubs, Brian Cashman has continued the Yankees’ rebuild by sending Miller to Cleveland.  New York has added to their already impressive farm system with this haul of prospects coming from the Indians.  The key piece is outfielder Clint Frazier.  Frazier was the 5th overall pick in the 2013 MLB Amateur Draft, and has shown great potential while in the minor leagues.  In 94 games this year between Double-A and Triple-A, Frazier has batted a respectable .273 with 13 home runs.  The 21 year-old has also displayed some value on the bases, swiping 13 bags.  Baseball America ranked Frazier as the 21st overall prospect in their Midseason Top 100 Prospect Rankings.  Many people within the Yankees organization have some very high hopes for Frazier:

While comparing Frazier to Mike Trout may be a bit optimistic, there are parallels in their respective games.  Like Trout, Frazier is a player with five tool potential.  The Yankees also acquired 2014 first-round draft pick Justus Sheffield.  The 20 year-old left hander projects to be a mid-rotation starter for the Yankees.  At High-A Lynchburg, Sheffield has a 3.59 ERA with 93 strikeouts in 19 starts.  Another player headed to the Bronx is reliever Ben Heller.  Although Heller is not a highly touted prospect, some scouts around the league think he has serious potential:

This trade looks like a win-win for both clubs.  The Yankees now have one of the top farm systems in baseball, headlined by Frazier, Jorge Mateo, Gleyber Torres, and Aaron Judge.  They have a legitimate chance to replicate their success they experienced in the late 90’s if their nucleus of top prospects pan out.  As for the Indians, they clearly are emphasizing winning now.  Ever since the Cavaliers brought a championship home to Cleveland, the Indians have been playing at a higher level.  They reportedly had also acquired Jonathan Lucroy from the Milwaukee Brewers, but Reports are that he exercised his no trade clause.   Andrew Miller will provide a top bullpen arm to go along with their overpowering rotation led by Corey Kluber.  The Indians are looking like champions, and everything is looking up for the city of Cleveland.

Now, about the Browns…