Dodgers Add Mills to the Bullpen Mix
Dodger General Manager Kevin Malone tapped into his former team again Friday by signing middle relief pitcher Alan Mills, who appeared in 72 games last season for the Baltimore Orioles.
Mills, 32, signed a three-year, $6.5-million contract, and will be reunited with Malone, a former assistant general manager with the Orioles. Mills also played under Dodger Manager Davey Johnson when Johnson was with the Orioles in 1996-97.
“I’m excited about being reunited with Kevin Malone and Davey Johnson, who are working hard at putting together a championship team,” said Mills, who had a 3-4 record with a 3.74 earned-run average and two saves last season.
“I know what [Johnson] can do as a manager, and he knows what I can do as a reliever.”
Since the end of the season, the Dodgers have made several moves in an attempt to upgrade their bullpen. They re-signed Jeff Shaw, their closer who could have demanded a trade, and acquired Mel Rojas from the New York Mets for third baseman-outfielder Bobby Bonilla.
“With Jeff Shaw, Mel Rojas, Antonio Osuna and now Mills, we are as strong as we can be right-handed in the bullpen,” Malone said in a statement.
"[Mills] is a proven and experienced reliever with quality pitches who thrives on situations with the game on the line.”
Mills is the second free agent to sign with the Dodgers, joining outfielder Devon White, who played for World Series-winning teams in Toronto and Florida. Mills, who made $1 million last season, will get $1.25 million next season, $2.25 million in 2000 and $3 million in 2001.
In his nine-year career, Mills has a 31-26 record with a 3.90 ERA and 13 saves. He was drafted by the Angels in 1986 before being traded to the New York Yankees in 1987.
It wasn’t until 1992 that Mills had any real success in the major leagues. After being acquired by the Orioles in a three-player deal with the Yankees, Mills had a 10-4 record with a 2.61 ERA.
In 1997, after spending two months early in the season on the disabled list for a damaged nerve in his non-throwing shoulder, Mills was dominant after the All-Star break with a streak of 14 consecutive scoreless appearances.
In other news, the Dodgers’ two-year contract with infielder Juan Castro, announced Wednesday, is for $725,000, with $325,000 coming next season.
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Alan Mills By the Numbers
Statistics for new Dodger middle relief pitcher Alan Mills. The 32-year-old right-hander is 6 eet 1 and 195 pounds. His best season was his first with the Baltimore Orioles in 1992, when he was 10-4 with a 2.61 earned-run average and two saves
Category 1998 Career Record 3-4 31-26 ERA 3.74 3.90 Saves 2 13 Innings 77 500 1/3 Strikeouts 57 362 Ks/9 innings 6.5 6.5 Walks 50 306 Walks/9 innings 5.7 5.5