On June 20th, the Philadelphia Phillies promoted left-handed pitcher Hoby Milner to the major league roster. He hasn’t pitched yet but that could change at any time, so here’s a quick look at his career and what he offers.
Milner pitched college ball at the University of Texas, seeing action as both a starter and reliever. From 2010 through 2012 he pitched 188 innings with a 2.44 ERA and a 161/64 K/BB. Not a hard-thrower, he went in the seventh round of the draft to the Phillies in ‘12.
Used initially as a starter by the Phillies, he performed pretty well due to his control but seemed to have maxed out his potential on reaching Double-A in 2014. He converted to the bullpen full-time in ‘15, performed well in the high minors, but was not placed on the 40-man roster.
Milner was a seventh round pick by the Phillies from the University of Texas in 2012. Thin and scrawny at 6-2, 165, he was a moderately successful starter in the low minors but converted to the bullpen in ’15 and has been effective in that role, posting a 2.49 ERA in 65 innings between Double-A and Triple-A in ’16 with a 76/15 K/BB. Milner is so thin he looks like he will blow away in the wind and he doesn’t burn radar, topping at 90 and usually pitching at 86-89, but his change-up is excellent and he has a decent breaking ball, along with a fearless approach and sharp control. He could be a useful 11th man on a staff.
He didn’t stick with the Indians this spring but has continued to perform well (2.60 ERA in 27.2 innings, 27/4 K/BB in Triple-A) and now has his major league opportunity.
Milner is listed at 6-2, 165, born January 13th, 1991. The pre-season report holds: he doesn’t have a blazing fastball but he changes speeds well and understands his craft. Since college he’s altered his mechanics, dropping down with a more slingly-type delivery that adds extra deception to his stuff. He’s tough on lefties as a result and could be quite useful in a LOOGY role.
Here’s his old delivery from college with the Texas Longhorns:
And here’s a look at his new lower-angle approach.