From BR Bullpen
Note: This is the article for the major league player who debuted in 2009. The MLB manager known as Brad Mills who debuted as a player in 1980 (and also went to the University of Arizona) has an article here.
Bradley Aaron Mills
- Bats Left, Throws Left
- Height 6' 0", Weight 185 lb.
- School University of Arizona
- High School Mountain View High School (Mesa)
- Debut June 18, 2009
 Biographical Information
Mills was called up to the big club when ace Roy Halladay was placed on the disabled list. In his major league debut, he was the starting pitcher against the Philadelphia Phillies on June 19th. He gave up four earned runs on six hits and four walks in 3 2/3 innings, including home runs by Jayson Werth and Jimmy Rollins, but was not involved in the decision as the Jays rallied to beat the Phils 8-7 on Rod Barajas' 9th-inning pinch home run.
Bradley Mills was selected by the Blue Jays in the 4th round of the 2007 amateur draft, out of the University of Arizona, a year after having been a 22nd round selection by the same team. He was signed by scout Dan Cholowsky and made his debut that summer with the Auburn Doubledays of the New York-Penn League, going 2-0, 2.00 in six games. In 2008, he had tremendous success at three levels of the Jays' organization, finishing with a combined record of 13-5, 1.95. He started out with Lansing of the Midwest League, where he was 6-3, 2.55 in 15 starts and made the mid-season all-star team, then was promoted to Dunedin of the Florida State League where he was 4-0, 1.35 in 6 starts. That earned him another promotion, to the AA New Hampshire Fisher Cats of the Eastern League, and he responded with a 3-2 record but an outstanding 1.10 ERA in his last 6 starts of the season. Overall, he struck out 159 batters in 147 innings between the three stops. His success put him on the fast track to the majors, although he would have to fight off a slew of other talented young pitchers to obtain his first shot at the Bigs.
Mills had been in competition for a spot in the Blue Jays starting rotation in spring training of 2009, following his outstanding season in the minors in 2008, but lost out to fellow rookies Scott Richmond and Ricky Romero. Two other rookies, Robert Ray and Brett Cecil made their debut as starting pitchers for the injury-riddled Blue Jays before Mills got the call in mid-June. He had been pitching for the AAA Las Vegas 51s, putting up a record of only 1-8, but with a decent 4.50 ERA in the hitter-friendly Pacific Coast League at the time of his call-up by the parent club. He had struck out 65 in 76 innings, while walking 34. He made two starts for the Blue Jays, going 0-1 with a 14.09 ERA, then won another game at Las Vegas before his season was cut short by arm problems.
Mills returned to Las Vegas in 2010. He was 7-4 with a 4.13 ERA in 16 starts when the Jays called on him to make an emergency start against the Baltimore Orioles on July 28th. He was outstanding, giving up no runs on two hits in 7 innings and was credited with the Jays' 5-0 win for his first major league victory. It was his only decision in 7 games in the big leagues, and he put up a 5.64 ERA in 22 1/3 innings. In the minors, he finished the year at 8-6, 4.97. He was back at Las Vegas to begin 2011, going 11-9, 4.00 in 24 starts, with 136 strikeouts in 157 1/3 innings. He got another brief look in the majors, making 5 appearances - 4 starts - with a record of 1-2, 9.82 in 18 1/3 innings.