Not in rotation to begin year, Miley now an All-Star
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WAUKEE -- When Spring Training began, Wade Miley was not looked at as a serious candidate to make the D-backs.
When the season started, Miley was not a part of the rotation.
Now, though, he's an All-Star, and will join his National League teammates for the Midsummer Classic on July 10 (5 p.m. MST, FOX) in Kansas City.
Miley was the lone D-backs player selected to the National League when the rosters were announced Sunday afternoon on the MLB All-Star Selection Show presented by Taco Bell.
"It's awesome," Miley said. "I don't know. It's just an honor to have your named called with all the guys who are going to be there. It's amazing."
D-backs second baseman Aaron Hill was named as a candidate in the All-Star Game Final Vote sponsored by Firestone, but he fell short as Cardinals third baseman David Freese won the spot.
Miley, who joined the rotation when Daniel Hudson initially got injured in April, is 9-4 with a 2.87 ERA in 16 games, 13 starts.
Though he pitched well in eight games (seven starts) toward the end of the 2011 season, Miley did not appear to have a spot on the pitching staff heading into Spring Training. Arizona had acquired starter Trevor Cahill and re-signed Joe Saunders, so the rotation was set.
In addition, the team had signed free-agent reliever Takashi Saito, so Miley figured to start the year in Triple-A Reno.
"I had my car packed to go to Reno on the last day," Miley said. "But it's baseball. It's a crazy game."
Miley, though, kept pitching well throughout the spring, and when Saito went down with a calf injury just days before the start of the season, Miley made the team.
After making three relief appearances, Miley was thrust into the rotation and thrived. In his first 12 starts, he went 8-3 with a 2.09 ERA.
Miley had a rare bad outing Saturday, when the Brewers battered him for eight runs over 3 2/3 innings, his shortest outing of the season.
The 83rd Major League Baseball All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX Sports, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS, and worldwide by partners in more than 200 countries via MLB International's independent feed. Pregame ceremonies begin at 4:30 p.m. MST. ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide exclusive national radio coverage. MLB Network, MLB.com and Sirius XM also will provide comprehensive All-Star Game coverage.
Fans will also have the opportunity to participate in the official voting for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player presented by Chevrolet via the 2012MLB.com All-Star Game MVP Vote during the All-Star Game on MLB.com.
Miley was born and resides in in Loranger, La., where the estimated population is just under 6,000. And he prefers to keep things very simple, which leads to some good-natured razzing by his teammates.
"I've always been that way -- I try not to think," Miley said.
During Spring Training the team had a daily "Words With Wade" where he would be given a word each morning that he would have to spell, give the definition of and use it in a sentence.
And he drew some ribbing in the clubhouse this season when he told his teammates he was hoping to visit Alcatraz prison while they were in San Diego. Alcatraz is, of course, located near San Francisco.
So Sunday morning, D-backs manager Kirk Gibson called a team meeting after learning Miley would be on the All-Star team.
On the TV in the clubhouse were the words "Worlds With Wade" and closer J.J. Putz asked him a couple of questions.
"They asked me where Alcatraz was at," Miley said. "I told them, 'San Francisco.' They asked me, 'What state do the Kansas City Royals play in?' I got it right, I said, 'Missouri.' Everybody thought I was going to say Kansas. Then they told me to spell 'All-Star.' I said, "A-L-L-S-T-A-R.' And they said, 'Errrrrrr.' Then they said my name. That's how they told me."
The only time he thought about the All-Star team, he said, was when teammates would talk to him about it, but he tried to remove those thoughts right after.