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It's been said before, but baseball players are people just like you and me --- albeit with a lot more earning power and maybe a few of the personality quirks that come with great gifts and a lot of attention at an early age. Further in that vein, we have Justin Miller and Orlando Hudson, two young men whom the Jays are counting on to continue their development both on the field and off.

Miller, apparently, is an aficionado of the tattoo, and showed up to spring training adorned with body art applied by a neighbour back home. Justin's still young, so maybe it hasn't quite clicked with him yet that every time he pitches poorly and is driven from a game by the opposing batters, he can expect to hear things like "The Angels really tattooed Justin Miller tonight." I seem to recall a backup catcher for Toronto several years ago who had a Jays logo inked into one of his buttocks, which was fine up until the team released him a few months later.

Then there's Hudson, a man slightly more seasoned in what can happen when youthful exuberance is amplified by mass media. A year after the now-tiresome "pimp" comment, Orlando is making the right call by refusing to discuss it any further. He's had some media and PR training since then, and it shows. He's also planning to organize a bowling tournament for autistic children, a subject he's familiar with, since two of his cousins suffer from the syndrome. Good for him.
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_Ray Bradbury - Monday, February 24 2003 @ 10:12 AM EST (#95664) #
Justin Miller is the Illustrated Man.
Coach - Monday, February 24 2003 @ 10:27 AM EST (#95665) #
Miller's shoulder has been a concern lately, but this update from (who else?) Spencer Fordin at the Official Site says everything's fine. I'm still concerned, especially after this revelation:

(Miller) said he wasn't sure how he originally hurt himself, but that he thinks he did it lifting weights. He also said that he tried to keep it quiet for a while, before realizing that it wouldn't go away. Miller, who threw four bullpen sessions before the rest of the team arrived, subsequently shut everything down.

Shades of Chris Carpenter, who selfishly kept his injury a secret last spring so he could pitch at Fenway on Opening Day. The team can't make the right decisions if the players aren't 100% honest about their physical condition. I hope the Jays treat the Illustrated Man with extreme caution this spring, and thanks to deep depth, they can.
_R Billie - Monday, February 24 2003 @ 02:04 PM EST (#95666) #
It's good to see guys with soft bodies like Miller and Arnold hitting the weights to increase their fitness and strength, but it has to be done in the right way, especially for pitchers. Miller has to invest in a personal trainer (one that knows what he's doing) and check with the Jays trainers about what exercises and what amount of weight is appropriate for him.

I'm glad that they at least shut him down and the soreness may be blessing in disguise as Miller can miss that tough first month of the season to recover and work on his game in Syracuse (remember the Jays don't need a 5th starter until April 14th).
_Richard - Monday, February 24 2003 @ 09:17 PM EST (#95667) #
Given his herky-jerky motion I think we may see Miller make more than one visit to the D.L. I don't see him making the opening day roster as anything but a starter.Given his inconsistent release point and first inning difficulties I can't see him as a reliever.
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