After burning up the Cactus League, Brad Miller takes his place beside Mariners' $240 million man

Former Clemson star, ACC player of the year batted .410 in spring training, with an .836 slugging mark, 4 homers, 6 doubles, 4 triples

Seattle Mariners shortstop Brad Miller (5) forces Tampa Bay Rays' Evan Longoria out at second base during the seventh inning of a baseball game Tuesday, Aug. 13, 2013, in St. Petersburg, Fla. The Mariners defeated the Rays 5-4. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Seattle Mariners shortstop Brad Miller (5) forces Tampa Bay Rays' Evan Longoria out at second base during the seventh inning of a baseball game Tuesday, Aug. 13, 2013, in St. Petersburg, Fla. The Mariners defeated the Rays 5-4. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Brad Miller is hoping that a change of climate does his game no harm.

The former Clemson star and ACC player of the year set the warm-weather Cactus League on fire during spring training, batting .410 in 21 games and winning the Seattle Mariners' starting shortstop job.

Now, in addition to having won an opening-day starting spot in the Mariners' infield, he's being touted on various websites as a potential Fantasy League star.

New Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon kept the competition with Nick Franklin open until the final days of spring training, when he declared Miller the clear-cut winner and sent Franklin down to AAA Tacoma.

"Brad separated himself," McClendon told MLB.com. "I'd be a fool not to recognize that. Brad won the job. Nick didn't lose it."

Miller will start alongside the Mariners' new $240 million second baseman, Robinson Cano.

In addition to batting .410 during spring training, Miller had a .478 on-base percentage and an over-the-top .836 slugging average, powered by four homers, six doubles and four triples. He scored 17 runs and batted in a dozen.

Last season as a Mariners rookie, he played in 76 games and batted .265, with 25 extra base hits, 36 RBIs, and five stolen bases.

The early-season weather adjustment is considerable for the Mariners, who play their Cactus League games out of Peoria, Arizona. Temperatures in Arizona will reach the 90s by the end of this week, while Seattle is expecting another 2-3 weeks in the fifties.

The Mariners will open their season tonight against the Angels at Anaheim, Calif.

Follow Kerry Capps on Twitter @oandwkc

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Comments » 2

michtiger writes:

Great for Brad. what ever happened to Parker in the majors?

KerryCapps writes:

in response to michtiger:

Great for Brad. what ever happened to Parker in the majors?

Kyle Parker is starting out the season at AAA Colorado Springs.

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