Jun 20, 2012

Mid Sixties Mets Pitcher: Lary Miller (1964-1965)

Larry Don Miller was born June 19th 1937 in Topeka, Kansas. The six foot left handed pitcher attended the University of Kansas getting signed as an amateur free agent by the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1959. Miller pitched in the Dodgers organization through 1964 having his best season there that year going 8-0 with a 1.68 ERA at AAA Albuquerque.

He was called up to the Dodgers staff in June debuting in Cincinnati taking a 2-1 loss to the Reds. Later in the season the Mets would tag him for three runs over six innings at Shea Stadium as he took his eighth loss of the season. He went 4-8 with a 4.18 ERA for the sixth place Dodgers. That October he was sent to the New York Mets for Dick Smith.  

Miller began the year with AAA Buffalo going 6-1 with a 2.59 ERA making a good impression, getting called up to a poor 1965 Mets staff in June. He debuted as a Met in Pittsburgh against Pirates on June 3rd, getting hit for three runs not recording an out in the inning. He would pitch mostly middle relief work for the '65 Mets team. On June 20th in the first game of a double header in Los Angeles, although he allowed a sac fly RBI to Jim Lefebvre to tie the game, he earned the win as Roy McMillan's sac bunt scored Charley Smith in the top of the 8th inning for a 3-2 Mets win.

In July he was beat by the St. Louis Cardinals in a rare start as they scored four runs on him in the first three innings. In September he lost three decisions ending the year at 1-4 with one hold & a 5.02 ERA in 28 appearances. In 1965 he went 10-12 at AAA Jacksonville third in wins to Tom Seaver & Galen Cisco while striking out 121 batters. He got a September call up pinching in four games going 0-2 with a 7.56 ERA.

In his first game back up he got the start at Shea Stadium allowing a Dick Allen HR while losing to Jim Bunning & the Philadelphia Phillies 6-0. In his final appearance he allowed HRs to Willie McCovey & Jim Ray Hart in San Francisco on September 17th 1965. Miller pitched in the minors through 1969 finishing up in the Pacific Coast League with Phoenix. He was 58-51 in the minors in nine seasons with a 3.43 ERA.

No comments: