Bliss, Miller tabbed First Team All-Region

AUBURN, Ala. – Junior infielders Ryan Bliss and Tyler Miller were named 2021 ABCA/Rawlings First Team All-Southeast Region, the American Baseball Coaches Association announced Wednesday.

ABCA Rawlings First Team All-Region selections are nominated for ABCA/Rawlings All-America honors, which will be announced Saturday, June 19. A complete list of the All-Region Teams can be found here.

For Bliss, the All-Region honors are the latest on a list of postseason accolades that already includes being named Collegiate Baseball Second Team All-America, Second Team All-SEC, SEC All-Defensive Team and a semifinalist for the Brooks Wallace Award and Dick Howser Trophy. He became the fourth two-time All-American in program history, joining Gregg Olson (1987-88), Casey Mize (2017-18) and Tanner Burns (2019-20).

A native of LaGrange, Georgia, Bliss finished the regular season as the only player in the SEC to rank in the top five in average (.366), slugging (.664), runs (31), hits (48), doubles (nine), home runs (10), RBI (30) and total bases (87) during league games. He also ranked in the top five in the league overall in average (.362), slugging (.643), hits (75) and total bases (133) during the regular season.

Bliss collected multiple hits in a league-best 26 of 51 games during the regular season, including 16 of 30 games in SEC play, and finished the year with a homer and another multi-hit effort in the Tigers’ SEC Tournament game vs. Ole Miss. His .365 average and 15 home runs are the most by an Auburn shortstop in the same season since Doug Gilcrease hit .386 with 17 home runs in 1982.

A native of Spanish Fort, Alabama, Miller finished the regular season leading the SEC and ranked sixth in the NCAA with 61 RBI. His 61 RBI are the second most by an Auburn player since 2010, trailing only Edouard Julien’s SEC-best 69 RBI in 2018. He drove in multiple runs in a league-best 18 games, including eighth contests with three or more RBI.

Miller started in 51 of 52 games during the season, including 50 straight to finish the year. Along with leading the way in RBI, he paced the Tigers with 16 home runs and ranked second in hits (65) total bases (125) and slugging (.601), tied for second in runs (38) and third in average (.313).

After coming to The Plains as a junior college shortstop prior to the 2020 season, Miller made the move to first base in 2021 and started in 48 games at the position. He had a hand in 42 of Auburn’s SEC-best 53 doubles plays and turned in a .997 fielding percentage, committing just one error in 398 chances.