Keith Law projects 3B Aidan Miller to Braves in latest mock draft
An injury widely considered a top 20 pick this spring has caused uncertainty in Miller’s stocks
The Atlanta Braves have never minded looking for talent among injured players in the draft, and Athletic’s Keith Law is leading them in that direction with a 24th pick overall in his first mock draft of the season. Aidan Miller is a third baseman from Mitchell High School in Florida, and while he’s had a wonderful amateur career, he fractured his hamate this spring, missing most of his senior season. His plate appearances since then have predictably not looked quite like the same hitter due to Hamat injuries.
Without that injury, Miller would never have been available at 24th, which is an interesting value proposition for an organization that has had no shot at the draft’s top talent due to its winning streak in recent years. Miller has potential for an impactful offense as he combines one of the best strikers among assist players with added raw power and breathtaking dismount speeds this spring. Most believe he can stay at third base for the long term, which would add value to his profile compared to a pure first baseman. The MLB pipeline mock draft took him to the Orioles much earlier, 17th overall, while Baseball America took him all the way to the Mariners at 29th, showing how torn the organizations are over how much of his performance in this spring is due to his Hamamate injury. Both Baseball America and Pipeline still believe that #24 would be a value proposition and rank him #20 and #12 on their top draft prospect lists.
If Miller were to join the Braves in 24th place and they picked and signed him, it would certainly be a great addition to a system that relies heavily on offensive talent. Hamatum injuries are known to degrade player performance in the short term, particularly in terms of power production. In the long run, however, they shouldn’t cause problems for Miller. For scouts it is more the lack of a 100 percent performance in their final year, because especially with young players, who all develop at different speeds, it is important to have the most up-to-date data about a player possible in order to be able to make the right decisions. Miller is bolstered by a previous amateur track record, in which he won All-American Game MVP last summer and led Team USA 18U’s national team to the gold medal series at the 2022 WBSC U-18 World Championship.