Tony Miller ex­celled in mul­ti­ple sports dur­ing ca­reer

The Morning Journal (Lorain, OH) - - SPORTS - By Marissa McNees

Nowa­days, Tony Miller can be seen watch­ing his son, An­thony, play base­ball for Lorain High School or coach­ing youth teams in the area, but it wasn’t all that long ago Miller was a stand­out ath­lete in his own right for Southview High School and beyond.

Miller was a three-sport ath­lete at Southview, claim­ing var­sity let­ters in foot­ball, wrestling and base­ball be­fore con­tin­u­ing on at the Univer­sity of Toledo and in Ma­jor League Base­ball, achieve­ments earn­ing him a spot among this year’s Lorain Sports Hall of Fame in­ductees.

Miller had much suc­cess in both foot­ball and wrestling. As a three-year starter for the Saints, he earned All-Ohio hon­ors af­ter scor­ing 18 touch­downs and ac­cu­mu­lat­ing 1,800 all-pur­pose yards his se­nior sea­son. He was a state-qual­i­fier on the wrestling team his ju­nior year be­fore an in­jury kept him out of the tour­na­ment the fol­low­ing sea­son.

But it was base­ball that took Miller to the pro­fes­sional level.

He was no­ticed by scouts af­ter bat­ting .380 as a sopho­more and con­tin­ued to hone his skills as high school pro­gressed. He ac­cepted a schol­ar­ship to Toledo where he played both foot­ball and base­ball.

Miller played for Toledo from 1999-2001 and, again, had suc­cess on the grid­iron as a de­fen­sive back and kick Colorado Rock­ies’ Tony Miller, cen­ter, is con­grat­u­lated by team­mates af­ter hit­ting a game-win­ning dou­ble in the bot­tom of the ninth in­ning against the White Sox in a spring train­ing game in Tuc­son, Ariz., on March 15, 2006.

re­turner, but it was on the base­ball field where he truly ex­celled.

As a fresh­man, he led the Rock­ets with a .333 bat­ting av­er­age be­fore lead­ing the team in stolen bases and runs scored as a sopho­more. Cur­rently Miller is among the top 10 in pro­gram his­tory in seven cat­e­gories:

• Tied for first place for sin­gle-sea­son stolen bases (29)

• Sec­ond in sin­gle-sea­son runs scored (63)

• Fourth in ca­reer-bat­ting av­er­age (.340)

• Sixth in sin­gle-sea­son RBI (50)

• Sev­enth in runs scored

in a ca­reer (125)

• Eighth in sin­gle-sea­son to­tal bases (115)

• Tied for ninth for sin­gle-sea­son hits (71)

With num­bers like that, it’s no sur­prise Miller was drafted by the Colorado Rock­ies in the 10th round of the 2001 MLB Draft.

He worked his way through the mi­nors be­fore be­com­ing an all-star and team MVP for the Triple-A Colorado Springs Sky Sox.

Miller com­pleted his mi­nor league ca­reer in the Blue Jays or­ga­ni­za­tion in 2006, where in­juries ul­ti­mately ended his pro­fes­sional ca­reer. He played in

a to­tal of 572 pro­fes­sional games.

Miller re­sides in Lorain with his wife, three sons and daugh­ter, and will be en­shrined as a mem­ber of the 2018 Lorain Sports Hall of Fame Class on May 19.

The 49th Lorain Sports Hall of Fame en­shrine­ment ban­quet is May 19 at Ger­man’s Villa, 3330 Lib­erty Ave., Ver­mil­ion. For ticket in­for­ma­tion, con­tact Ron Feld­kamp (440-244-3449) or Tom Bauer (440-2138719, tbauer0403@gmail. com).


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