The St. Louis Cardinals announced Wednesday that they had signed former Phillie Brad Miller to a one-year, Major League contract. He will make two million dollars in 2020, per Jon Heyman of Radio.com. Miller, 30, was immediately placed on the 40-man roster after the team transferred hard-throwing closer Jordan Hicks on the 60-day injured list. He will wear No. 15 for the Redbirds.
The Phillies acquired Miller for cash considerations in a trade with the Yankees in June. He became a fan-favorite when he wandered into a Chinatown shop and bought the biggest bamboo plant he saw. The Phillies, amidst a seven-game losing streak, were seemingly reinvigorated by the plant’s presence in the clubhouse and swept the New York Mets at home.
Miller also gave life to a Phillies bench that was one of the worst in baseball through the first two months of the season. He had a .941 OPS in 130 plate appearances with the team and finished the season with seven home runs in his last 30 plate appearances.
The Phillies will sorely miss Miller’s defensive versatility, above-average exit velocity and Matt Stairs-esque approach at the plate. The team is hoping to find someone as valuable as Miller within the long list of veteran Spring Training invitees who were given minor-league deals. It’s not clear whether or not Miller’s two-million-dollar salary would have pushed the Phillies above the luxury tax, as Neris and Realmuto’s arbitration cases have not been settled yet.
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