Tom Milone seemed like an underrated player to me...
So, I dug into his BB/SO and BB/9 numbers and looked for some comparables to see just how underrated he might be.
Some interesting results...
For starters, here's Tom Milone's career minor league #s for SO/BB, SO/9 and WHIP:
Tom Milone, Minor League (IP: 516.2)
Now, here's another pitcher's minor league career numbers:
Pitcher X, Minor League (IP: 491.1)
Pitcher X was, of course, Greg Maddux.
Now, Maddux's Major League numbers:
Greg Maddux, Major League
Tom Glavine Minor League (561 IP)
Roy Halladay Minor League (638 IP)
And Major League:
Tom Glavine Major League
Roy Halladay Major League
So Tom Milone's career minor league 5.54 SO/BB shatters everyone else's, and his 8.1 SO/9 is also better than all of the above. His Minor league ERA is 3.05, so it's not like that hasn't been there, either.
To put those stats in perspective...
The current active leaders in SO/BB are Dan Haren and Mariano Rivera, each with 4.04. The all-time leaders are Tommy Bond with 4.46 (1800's pitcher), Curt Schilling with 4.38, and Pedro Martinez with 4.15. No one else has better than 4 career.
Milone's BB/9 rate in the minors has been 1.50. The current Major League active leader is Carlos Silva with 1.73, followed by Roy Halladay with 1.85 and Dan Haren with 1.89.
One pitcher I found does outdo Milone's Minor League numbers.
Stephen Strasburg (75 minor league IP):
So Milone, throwing 87 MPH or so, has a SO/BB almost that of Strasburg's, and better than Maddux's by a good margin.
To be fair...here's Brad Radke's minor league numbers:
Brad Radke Minor League (581 IP)
Similar WHIP and SO/9, though Milone had a better SO/BB by a good chunk. Radke is, it appears, the <a href="http://mlb.mlb.com/stats/sortable.jsp?c_id=mlb&tcid=mm_mlb_stats#sectionType=sp&playerType=QUALIFIER&statType=pitching&page_type=SortablePlayer&season=&season_type=ALL&sportCode='mlb'&league_code='MLB'&split=&team_id=&active_sw=&game_type='R'&position='1'&sortOrder='asc'&sortColumn=bb_9&results=&page=1&perPage=50&timeframe=&extended=2&last_x_days=&ts=1328777247464&tab_level=child&click_text=Sortable+Player+pitching" target="new">modern career leader in BB/9 at 1.69.</a>
So, going by these numbers, it seems Milone is, ah, a wee bit underrated? XD His numbers are pretty off the charts compared to other soft throwers like Glavine or Maddux. Even if his Major League numbers are like a -50% dropoff of his minor league stats, he still has the makings of a top-notch pickup.
What do you guys think? Any other comparables to take a look at?