Indians righthander Adam Miller missed his scheduled start Thursday for Triple-A Buffalo with a finger injury, and while the Tribe doesnâ€™t have a hard timetable for a return, they are optimistic the 22-year-old will be back on the mound quickly.
â€œAdam had some soreness in the top joint of his middle finger the day following his last start,â€ assistant general manager Chris Antonetti said. â€œWe expect that he will be back in the Buffalo rotation soon.â€
When the injury came to light prior to Millerâ€™s start, a source from the Bisons described the finger problem as similar to an injury associated with rock climbing, which certainly made Indians fans wary.
Lefthander Mariano Gomez was on the fast track through the system in 2003 when he ruptured a proximal tendon in his left middle fingerâ€”the injury generally associated with rock climbers because it is located at the base of the finger near the palm of the hand. While Gomez is back and pitching out of the bullpen at Double-A Akron, he wound up missing the bulk of the 2004 season and really hasnâ€™t been the same pitcher who went 8-2, 2.75 in 111 innings in low Class A in 2002.
But Millerâ€™s injury is unrelated, as the soreness Antonetti described is in the upper joint of the 2003 first-round pickâ€™s middle finger.
Miller missed the first half of 2005 due to a ligament strain in his elbow, but has bounced back to become one of the elite righthanded pitching prospects in the game. In addition to his upper-90s fastball and wipeout slider, Miller added a two-seamer last year at Double-A Akron, and the fireballing Texan now understands the value of a quality changeup.
Miller is 4-1, 2.45 in 44 innings with Buffalo this season.
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