Darrell Miller Jr. couldn’t have asked for a better start to his 2017 season. Batting .769 (10 for 13), Miller is piling up the hits to start his professional career. He went 2 for 4 on Sunday and lowered his batting average.
The last name sounds a bit familiar, right? That’s because he’s the nephew of Basketball Hall of Famers, Reggie Miller and Cheryl Miller. Additionally, he is also the son former major leaguer, Darrell Miller Sr.
With athletics running in his family, Darrell Miller Jr. has become quite the baseball player himself. A highly touted prospect in high school, Miller was drafted by the Philadelphia Phillies in the 34h round of the 2012 MLB Draft. He ultimately decided to go to college though, choosing his uncle’s alma mater, UCLA.
He didn’t receive much playing time his freshman year in college, only batting .143 in 10 games. This carried over to his sophomore year too, as he only went it bat five times the whole year. But in 2015, he got his opportunity. Appearing in 55 games, batting . 257 and showing nice defensive poise at catcher.
The good fortune of playing time didn’t last long though. Right before the season started, it was discovered that he needed labrum surgery, causing him to miss the whole season.
Undrafted in 2016, Miller was out of baseball for about a year, until in February of 2017, the Kansas City Royals inked him a deal.
Now assigned to the Rookie League Idaho Falls Chukars, you wouldn’t of noticed Miller has been out of baseball for roughly two years. As mentioned above, he has 10 hits in his first 13 at bats, which easily leads the Pioneer League. He has also mixed in two extra-base hits, a double and a home run.
Obviously, this pace will slow down. Nonetheless, it’s got to feel good for Miller to be having some early success after such a long hiatus away from the field.