SS Blake Miller
2012 Alaska Goldpanners of Fairbanks
H/W: 6’2″ 195lb
2012 School: Western Oregon (NCAA DII)
Previous School: Sacramento State (NCAA DI)
2012 Class: Junior
Draft Eligibility: 2013 (DII Senior)
Hometown: Salem, Oregon
Miller’s Official ABL Stats
All Posts Regarding Blake Miller
Finally out from under the pile of game notes I’d buried myself in, I reckon its time to crank out some more player profiles while we have some season left and people are still in the baseball mood. Having given Bucs, Pilots and Chinooks players the spotlight this season I’ll keep things rolling with a Goldpanner next: shortstop Blake Miller.
Blake Miller was a 2009 graduate of South Salem High School in Oregon. While attending there, Miller experimented with a variety of sports, lettering in both basketball and football, in addition to baseball. He was a letter-winner from Freshman onward on the diamond, though, and naturally that became the focus of his sporting life.
His dedication to baseball in high school paid off when he was recruited by Sacramento State and given the opportunity to become the starting shortstop. However, after two years of dealing with the California life, Miller decided to relocate closer to home. It was then that he transferred to DII Western Oregon University in Monmouth, Oregon; a small town just southwest of Salem. He continued his successful baseball ways in 2012 there as a Junior, bringing home first-team DII All-American honors by both the ABCA and the NCBWA.
Miller didn’t pull any punches regarding his intentions in coming to the ABL when interviewed by his home-town paper: “My goal for playing in Alaska is to expose myself to scouts” he said. The success of teammate and former Goldpanner Grady Wood, a 10th round draft pick, influenced him: “I have the same goals, so hopefully I can get noticed and get drafted like he did.” That being said, Miller is no slouch in the classroom; he is pursuing a degree in Criminal Justice with a minor in Social Science.
My first impression of Blake Miller in ABL play is that he is certainly capable of handling the leather, although as luck would have it, I saw him manning first base. He’s manned that station in addition to his routine shortstop abilities, and he’s also done some time at third. I guess that just goes to show his versatility on the diamond. As for his work at the plate, he’s hitting to the tune of .421 with five homers in 20 league games this season, with a 1.154 OPS, so I think those numbers speak for themselves.
Miller is hoping to continue the strong season he’s been having and garner some buzz heading into his senior season at Western Oregon. The Goldpanners are hoping he will help propel them back to the top of the standings as they make a late-season run at the title.
The ABL season is on the downhill slide, but 49thStateHardball.com will keep spotlighting players in profiles, scouting notes, photos, and more all season long and throughout the offseason. Keep checking with us as we come down the stretch to the crowning of a new Alaska League Champion.