Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Milton Bradley Traded to A's

The Dodgers have traded troubled outfielder Milton Bradley (and jetsam infielder Antonio Perez) to the Oakland A's for highly regarded outfield prospect Andre Ethier. Here are my thoughts on the trade:

- I'm slightly amused that the trade was announced on Fergie Jenkins birthday (happy 62nd birthday Fergie!). Jenkins was another player with talent who was often traded. However, Jenkins' transgressions (falling asleep in the bullpen in Fenway, getting caught with $500 in drugs at the border, being Canadian) are benign compared to Bradley's (three times this year police have been summoned to his home for domestic disturbance issues, etc). Ferguson Jenkins was also much, much more talented than Bradley.

- I have become convinced that Milton Bradley's talent has been vastly over-rated. Baseball-reference.com lists Gabe Kapler as the most similar player through age 27. Gabe Kapler! Of course I could be wrong and this could be a steal for Billy Beane and the A's but my gut tells me no. Red Sox fans can tell you about Kapler's production in his year 27 and 28 seasons (it should be noted that Kapler however was a positive clubhouse force - Bradley not so much).

- Between his anger management issues and his injuries - Bradley has managed to make a player like JD Drew look durable. Bradley has had 5 full seasons in MLB but has had a season of over 102 games played just once. Bradley is coming off knee surgery and its not like he was a speedster before (witness his 65% stolen base percentage).

- When you look at the Dodgers' depth chart - the team looks to be in shambles. The starting pitching looks OK but the outfield and third base are a mess.

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