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Arizona Diamondbacks and the 2023 Draft: Aidan Miller

A possible but unlikely prep candidate that could be tempting for Arizona at #12.

Name: Aidan Miller
School: J.W. Mitchell HS, FL
Position: 3B
Height/Weight: 6’2″, 205 lbs.
B/T: R/R
D.O.B.: October 16, 2005
Committed: Arkansas
Comp: Yandy Diaz (with pop)


Hit: 50 Power: 60+ Run: 50 Field: 50 Arm: 60 Overall: 55

The Rundown|

Aidan Miller is the younger brother of, Jackson Miller, a second-round pick of the Cincinnati Reds in the 2020 MLB Draft - a left-handed hitting catching prospect with a canon for an arm. Both brothers graduated from J.W. Mitchell High School in the small, census-designated area (CDA) of Trinity, Florida. This younger Miller, is a power-hitting third-base prospect who, like his brother, has plenty of arm to spare. Miller had an impressive 2022 summer on the showcase circuit, showing off his powerful bat by winning the High School Homerun Derby Showcase during last July’s MLB All-Star festivities in Los Angeles. He was also named MVP of the All-American Game. Miller has represented Team USA on its 12U, 15U and 18U national teams. He won gold with both the 15U and 18U teams and led the 2022 18U team in hitting (.478). Miller is clearly the top third base prospect in the 2023 MLB Draft Class and is is probably the fourth-best infield prospect.

Pegging Miller’s draft ranking is a bit tricky for a number of reasons. On one hand, Miller has demonstrated one of the best, most consistent year-to-year prep bats to enter the draft in a few years, combining both the ability to hit for high average as well as easy raw power that allows him to hit massive bombs in game. This profile originally had Miller as a player likely to go in the 5-10 range in this year’s draft with the slight possibility to go earlier. However, Miller was struck with a broken hamate injury which sapped a great deal of his power over the course of the last year. This substantial decrease in power led to him beginning to fall down the draft boards. Additionally, Miller brings some concerns regarding the ability to sign him, those concerns increasing steadily the further he falls (more on that shortly). All that said, despite “falling”, Miller still ranks at #13 overall on MLB Pipeline, #15 at Fangraphs, and #20 overall at Baseball America. Due to additional circumstances, anyone drafting Miller should be expecting to pay full freight in order to land him.

Aidan Miller is a high-upside prep hitter with the potential to be an impact bat at an early age. He was also impressive on the mound during his high school career, but his twitchy and powerful hitting is where he’ll stick and become an elite prospect - probably quickly. While he missed the majority of his senior season with a hamate injury, his offensive profile is one of the most impressive among prep hitters in a loaded class of college bats. Miller’s swing is a bit unique, featuring a sizable leg kick and a significant hitch and barrel tip in his load. His easy raw power is beyond impressive for a prep bat and he backs it up with impressive barrel work that enables him to drive pitches with authority in various locations while allowing him to turn around elite velocity. He is consistently on time at contact, with excellent balance and a steady head throughout the swing—with some of the most impressive track record of performance you’ll find in the class. He is one of the best pure hitters in the high school class featuring thunderous-power bat speed, a sound approach, advanced understanding of the strike zone and (present) plus raw power, with a potential for plus-plus power as he continues to fill out. In short, he is a very complete offensive player.

At 6’2” and 205 lbs. Miller is already a sizeable specimen. However, his frame shows plenty of room for continued growth, which could add to his already impressive power stroke. Miller’s recent growth is what forced the sure-handed infielder from short to third. Miller’s shortstop reflexes translated well to the hot corner. Miller’s arm (already capable of making the cross-diamond throw at 91 mph) is more than capable of helping him stay at third as he progresses through the minors.

On the bases, Miller’s speed has decreased from slightly above average to merely average. There are some that believe that, should he continue to bulk up some, that his speed will decline into slightly below average. Most seem to think his speed will be just fine, that he will not be one of those lumbering oafs that clogs the basepaths.

One final major caveat looms over the decision to draft Miller, his age. At the time of the draft, he will be 19. While being “old for a prep bat” is not in itself a detriment, Miller’s age also means that he will be a draft eligible sophomore if he honours his commitment to Arkansas. Given that Miller’s most recent season was marred by a performance-sapping injury, should he far fall enough or fail to receive enough of a bonus offer, he could very easily choose to bet on himself and re-enter the draft in two seasons. Given Miller’s current offensive profile and that he still ranks as highly as he does in this years loaded draft class, it is not difficult to imagine that merely returning to health could land him a top-10 selection in 2025.

The Bard’s Take|

Miller’s massive potential and impressive track record all but guarantee that he is a first-round selection. However, his injury, age, and commitment, along with the depth of this draft class has his name peppered all over draft boards, with outlets mocking him going as high as 10 and as late as 34. Should the power return and the 2020 - 2022 version of Miller show up, anyone selecting him after #10 is getting themselves a steal. Should the injury prove problematic long-term, that ranking in the 30s is probably pretty close. With Miller still having room on his frame for healthy, productive muscle growth, the power issue, even if sapped by the injury some, could correct itself without any further hamate healing.

Chances seem 50/50 at the very best that Miller will still be on the board when Arizona makes their selection at #12. While he won’t be taking a haircut at #12, he might very well take one if selected in the top-10. His sophomore draft eligibility complicates matters in this regard. However, full-slot at #12 almost certainly gets the job done and prevents him from heading to Arkansas should Arizona decide they want one of the best prep bats in years to join their system.

Next up: Chase Dollander