Andrew Miller and Cody Allen are the two greatest relievers in Cleveland Indians’ history.
I just needed to get that out early during this 2018 season, so I can appreciate having the two greatest relievers in the history of the Cleveland Indians, at the same freaking time.
In Cody Allen, the Indians struck gold with a game-ready, reliever, almost right out of the draft. While the Indians have drafted bullpen arms over the years (Bryce Stowell, Matt Langwell, Ty Sturdevant, Preston Guilmet, Grant Sides, Jeff Johnson, C.C. Lee), Allen was the one guy that not only made it through the minor league wars, but buzzed through it in unprecedented fashion.
Allen was drafted by the Indians in the 23rd round of the 2011 draft, and by August 12, 2012, he was pitching for the Cleveland Indians. Ponder that for a second. In 14 months, Allen went from a 23rd round draft pick, to a Major League reliever, for the Indians. By the end of 2018, Cody Allen will likely be the All-Time saves leader, and while that statistic doesn’t mean a whole lot in the grand scheme of things, it does go to show you how quickly he became relevant, and dominant. You could also make an argument that because of longevity, Allen will end the year as the best all-time reliever, depending on what metrics you value.
Allen’s career number’s are immense: a career 2.62 ERA, 2.90 FIP, 3.23 xFIP, 11.60 K/9, with a career 7.9 fWAR.
In Andrew Miller, the Indians are trotting out reliever royalty. While comparing Miller to the true All-Time greats is silly because of longevity, let’s do it anyways. Mariano Rivera, generally considered the greatest reliever of all-time, had a career 1.94 ERA, with a 2.59 FIP, and a 2.99 xFIP. Miller has a 2.38 ERA as a reliever, with a 2.42 FIP and a 2.40 xFIP. But Miller’s K/9 is an insane 13.62, and while Rivera’s 8.33 is nothing to shrug at, you can see they’re in the ballpark. It’s also important to note that Rivera pitched in twice as many reliever innings as Miller, which is important to consider.
In Miller’s time with the Indians, his ERA is 1.35, his FIP is 1.90, and his xFIP is 2.28.
Sure, Miller has only pitched 100 innings with the Indians, but those 100 innings have been as good or better as any reliever in the history of the organization.
Grant Segall of the Plain Dealer recently asked Miller if he’d like to stay in Cleveland.
Miller and Allen probably want to stay, but Indians fans have been through this before. Both already are top 12 in reliever salary this season. Miller is currently $9,000,000 bargain, with Allen at $10,575,000.
What are the top five reliever salaries next season:
That will likely put Miller and Allen near the top of the list. Can the Indians afford two top five reliever salaries in 2019? Not likely. Will they allocate top five money to one of them? Maybe, but not likely.
So enjoy Miller and Allen in 2018, because in 2019, they’ll likely be calling a new city home.