The Red Sox have selected Auburn University infielder Tyler Miller with their ninth-round pick in the 2021 MLB first-year player draft at No. 256 overall.
Miller, 21, was regarded by Baseball America as the 397th-ranked prospect coming into the draft.
Previously selected by the Pirates in the 23rd round of the 2018 draft out of Spanish Fort High School, the Alabama native opted to attend East Mississippi Community College before transferring to Auburn for his sophomore year in 2020.
Most recently, the left-handed hitting, right-handed throwing Miller compiled a .313/.354/.601 batting line to go along with 10 doubles, one triple, 16 home runs, 61 RBI, 38 runs scored, three stolen bases, 15 walks, and 44 strikeouts over 51 games (231 plate appearances) with the Tigers this spring.
Listed at 6-foot-2 and 193 pounds, Miller is quite versatile, as he has seen time at left field, right field, shortstop, third base, and first base throughout his two-year career at Auburn.
According to his Baseball America scouting report, “Miller’s power went almost exclusively to the pull side this spring and it came with a strikeout rate close to 20%, but more concerning than those whiffs might be a lack of walks, as he took a free pass just 15 times in 231 plate appearances—a 6.5% walk rate that was towards the bottom for SEC hitters. Another potential concern is Miller’s ability to recognize and hit breaking stuff, as scouts noted that he struggled with those pitch types this spring and almost all of his impact came against fastballs.
“Miller has played a number of positions at Auburn, including third base, shortstop and both corner outfield spots, but spent almost all of his time at first this spring.”
Theoretically, Miller could return to Auburn for his senior season next spring, though it seems more likely than not that he will wind up signing with the Red Sox.
That said, the recommended slot value for the 256th overall pick in this year’s draft is approximately $160,300.
(Picture of Tyler Miller: Auburn University Athletics)