Monte Lee adds stud lefty to 2016 class in former Miss. St. signee Miller
|Monday, June 27, 2016, 9:45 PM- -|
Monte Lee picked up some much-needed pitching help Monday when former Miss. St. commit Mitchell Miller committed to the Tigers.
Miller, considered one of the nation's top prospects, will have a chance to come in and play right away and compete for a spot in the weekend rotation.
The 2016 Loganville (GA) Grayson pitcher originally committed to Mississippi St., but several recent coaching changes forced Miller to rethink his decision and look elsewhere.
When I committed, Coach (Butch) Thompson and Coach (Nick) Mingione were there and then they left. Those were the main two reasons I committed,” Miller told TigerNet. “When Coach Thompson left this year, I was going to leave and decommit, but I decided to wait and see who the new guy was and I ended up liking Coach (Wes) Johnson and Coach Mingione and then when they left I didn't really have a relationship with anybody there anymore, so I didn't know if I still wanted to go there. I filed for my release hoping that they would give it to me and they did.”
Clemson isn’t new to Miller as it has been a lifelong dream for him to don a Tiger uniform and attend Clemson University.
“When I was in the seventh grade, my sister took a tour up there, and I went with her, and I fell in love with it. I just fell in love with Clemson, and I told my mom I'm going to Clemson,” Miller said. “I bought Clemson hats and a C.J. Spiller jersey. I went on a visit my freshman year, and I didn't get an offer, but Mississippi St. gave me an offer that I couldn't really turn down and I really liked Mississippi State, so I went ahead and committed.”
When the opportunity to transfer materialized, Miller said the first person he fielded calls from was Lee, leading to a long visit and the commitment on Monday
“When I got released, Clemson was the first team to call me,” he said. “I got other calls from ACC schools, but Clemson was the first school I was going to give a chance to. Coach Lee, he's right up my alley. He's just a southern, country boy who likes to hunt and fish. We clicked really well today when we were talking. I got there at 10 o'clock, and I didn't leave Clemson until six.”
Miller is very familiar with his future pitching coach – Andrew See – as well as his coaching style.
“Coach See actually played one year at Georgia with my high school pitching coach, so he's a cool guy,” he said. “From when I met him today and from talking to him over the last week or so, he's a really cool guy. I think he's going to be good for me. I think he has a lot of the same stuff we did in high school; he does a lot of that stuff at Clemson.”
Miller has the makeup of a weekend starter with his 5-pitch repertoire.
“He (Lee) told me that if I come in and work and keep progressing like I'm progressing, he said I have a chance to be a Saturday or Sunday starter,” he said. “I have two different fastballs - a four-seam fastball and a two-seam fastball. I have a circle change, a curveball, and a cutter. I'm a power guy, I guess. I topped out at 94 mph this year. I sit 90-92, touching 93 and I topped out at 94. I like to work quick. I'm an up-tempo guy. Batters always call time to slow me down. When I get on the mound, I just try to keep my team in the game by competing.”
Biography from Mississippi St. signee notes
Considered one of the top pitchers in the class of 2016 ... Selected a 2015 Under Armour All-American. Perfect Game 2015 Preseason Underclass All-American 3rd Team member. A Perfect Game 2014 Preseason Underclass All-American Honorable Mention selection ... Perfect Game rates him a 10, which is considered a potential very high draft pick and an elite college prospect ... His fastball was clocked at 88-92, top 92, by Perfect Game in July, 2015 ... Chose Mississippi State over offers from Georgia and Georgia Tech and interest from Alabama, Clemson, and Virginia.