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Red Sox likely sending Jackie Bradley Jr. back to minors

Apr 18, 2013, 10:47 AM EST

Boston Red Sox Jackie Bradley singles in front of New York Yankees Chris Stewart in MLB game in New York Reuters

Jackie Bradley Jr. has started to lose playing time amid his struggles and Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe reports that the Red Sox will “likely” send the 23-year-old back to the minors when David Ortiz returns from the disabled list Friday.

Bradley is 5-for-38 (.097) with one extra-base hit in 12 games, although he has drawn six walks and stolen a base. There was plenty of debate about whether the Red Sox should have kept him at Triple-A to begin the season due to service time issues, but sending him to Triple-A now would serve the same purpose if he stays for a while.

Minnesota made a similar choice in going with 23-year-old Aaron Hicks as the Opening Day center fielder and he’s hitting even worse than Bradley at 2-for-45 (.044), which is a reminder that fan and media cries for teams to “put the best players on the field” aren’t always so cut and dried with rookies.

  1. banksatdixie - Apr 18, 2013 at 10:55 AM

    But, but…..but spring training stats!…..

  2. The Dangerous Mabry - Apr 18, 2013 at 11:04 AM

    Well, at least bringing him up early has guaranteed him a crack at the arbitration jackpot wad in a few years.

    • turdfurgerson68 - Apr 18, 2013 at 11:38 AM

      Not if he spends 20 days in the minors…which he will.

      He had a taste of the bigs. He needs to work on his game a bit more at Pawtucket and will be back in Sept.

  3. mornelithe - Apr 18, 2013 at 11:21 AM

    His performances during Spring Training certainly warranted a crack at the roster, however, it was clear after a few games, that there’s a hole in his swing (that every pitcher saw), and while he has great eye for the zone, he needs to work on his swing. There should be no problem with him going back to the minors to fill out his experience at the plate.

    • paperlions - Apr 18, 2013 at 12:18 PM

      No, really, it didn’t. ST stats just don’t mean anything considering that they are amassed against pitchers that are not yet in peak form, pitchers that are working on things rather than trying to get hitter out per se, and a LOT of pitchers that are not MLB caliber. Teams should always make decisions based on their scouting of the player and if he is ready….and they should ignore ST stats because they are useless.

      I think what happened with Him and Hicks is that even teams fail to realize how big an outlier performances like Harper’s and Trout’s were for 19 and 20 yr olds…and they got excited about potential and ST performance and jumped the guy. Without Harper and Trout doing what they did last year, these guys probably start the year in the minors where they belong.

      • mornelithe - Apr 18, 2013 at 12:41 PM

        Yes, it did. Already explained my perception, don’t really need to rehash it.

      • paperlions - Apr 18, 2013 at 12:46 PM

        Just about every time a team makes a decision about “winning a job” based primarily on ST performance, they are making a mistake….and there really wasn’t any other basis for the RS to give him a shot. Just like Hicks, scouts said both guys weren’t ready and there was no reason to have them up….and both guys were horribly out-matched.

      • 18thstreet - Apr 18, 2013 at 1:44 PM

        Well, someone had to play left.

        I think Ortiz’s injury (which opened the lineup spot) forced the issue. It wasn’t JUST the Spring Training stats. It was the Red Sox asking, “Who is going to play left? Gomes or Bradley? And if Gomes, who is going to DH?” So they kept him.

  4. xpensivewinos - Apr 18, 2013 at 11:21 AM

    Well, at least bringing him up early has guaranteed him a crack at the arbitration jackpot wad in a few years.

    ————————————————————

    Good one!

  5. 18thstreet - Apr 18, 2013 at 11:27 AM

    I think it all worked out. Presumably, he’ll be down in Pawtucket (or even Portland) for 20 games, taking the service time issue off the table. And I think he served the team very, very well during the opening series against the Yankees. His walk against Sabathia — coming back from 0-2 down — was arguably the tipping point of that game.

    Me, I thought he should start the year in the minors. But it worked out just fine.

  6. mudhead123 - Apr 18, 2013 at 11:36 AM

    Hahaha. People still talk about his outstanding walk against CC. Amazing. Never knew someone could get credit for a win because they walked

    • turdfurgerson68 - Apr 18, 2013 at 11:41 AM

      Agreed. Folks were making him out to be the second coming of Jim Rice after one game.

      He’ll be a fine CF for Boston…just needs to refine his game a bit more.

      • 18thstreet - Apr 18, 2013 at 1:41 PM

        He has two things in common with Jim Rice: he’s black and he plays left field. We were making him out to be the second coming of Jacoby Ellsbury, only with better fielding skills.

      • turdfurgerson68 - Apr 18, 2013 at 2:26 PM

        Why Ellsbury? More like Ellis Burks.

        Ellsbury is too injury prone.

    • 18thstreet - Apr 18, 2013 at 1:40 PM

      I think it’s the difference between watching an individual game versus season stats. At that moment, the score was 0-0. There were two outs and Sabathia had him down 0-2. He took some very close pitches, drew a walk and eventually scored the second run of the inning (and thus the game) in what was a 4-run inning.

      Sabathia didn’t give up any runs that day other than those in the 2nd inning. If Bradley makes an out there, it’s pretty likely a 2-1 Yankees lead heading into the ninth inning. New York turns it over to Rivera (instead of Joba, who gave up 3 runs), and thuuuuuh Yankees win.

      Now: did ONE WALK win the game? No. The team won the game. But I’d say it was the pivotal moment. Rookie at the plate, Cy Young winner on the mound. Lefty-lefty match up. He drew a walk.

      I’m a pretty big stat guy, but that moment really isn’t going to show up even in the most advanced stats.

  7. raybrower - Apr 18, 2013 at 11:52 AM

    More like Jackie BADley! Amirite? Hey, where you guys going?

  8. hitdog042 - Apr 18, 2013 at 2:51 PM

    banksatdixie

    The Dangerous Mabry
    Apr 18, 2013, 11:04 AM EDT
    Well, at least bringing him up early has guaranteed him a crack at the arbitration jackpot wad in a few years.

    No it doesn’t. Learn the rules before you post. 20 days in the minors and its reset.

    Love the posters.

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