Bradley adds value as DH
December, 9, 2007
On the heels of the one-year deal Eric Gagne is about to sign with the Milwaukee Brewers, Milton Bradley's one-year deal with the Texas Rangers is yet another buy-low attempt by a savvy general manager scared off by the multiyear demands of this year's mediocre free-agent crop. For as much press as Bradley receives for his temper, his biggest problem from a baseball perspective is that he is injury-prone. Bradley has reached 400 at-bats just once in his career, back in 2004, and totaled just more than 200 in two stops in 2007. He also is coming off an ACL tear that ended his season -- and, in practical terms, the San Diego Padres' season, too. He won't be at 100 percent on Opening Day, but there's a good chance he'll be able to be the designated hitter. When he manages to get on the field, though, Bradley is an excellent hitter. His swing is a little bit longer as a left-handed hitter, but he is good enough to be a legitimate switch-hitter who gets on base and has plus raw power from both sides. He's a star if and when he can play center field, but between the status of his knee and his general brittleness, his employer will get more value from him if he's at least a part-time DH.