Monday, July 2, 2007

Bradley = Trouble with a capital 'T'

Milton Bradley comes to the Padres with the reputation of a troublemaker.

Make that MilTon Bradley because the guy is trouble with a capital "T."

The least of it is that Bradley has been on the disabled list six times the past two seasons. The latest came Sunday when the Padres placed him on the DL with a strained left oblique.

The Oakland Tribune noted that Bradley played up the injury not to go to Kansas City in a proposed recent trade. The San Francisco Chronicle reported that the Athletics had no knowledge of the injury when Bradley used it to scuttle the KC trade.

Bradley’s childish outbursts are well documented. Here’s a list of his on-field acts in 2004 alone; which do not include 2004-05 incidents of domestic violence charges, disorderly conduct or leaving the scene of a traffic stop:

Pulled from an exhibition game by Cleveland for not running hard; traded to the Dodgers four days later.
Throws a bag of balls on the field; earning a $2,500 fine and four-game suspension.
After a fan throws a plastic bottle at him for missing a fly ball, he throws the bottle at the feet of fans; warranting a $15,000 fine and five-game suspension.

Then there’s the Bradley who accused former Dodger teammate Jeff Kent of not being able to deal with African-American teammates. This came after Bradley (again) failed to hustle.

Bradley may have a point about Kent. But if he looks in the mirror, he will see someone with strong evidence suggesting he has problems getting along with non-black players. (Or even black reporters, such as the one from the Los Angeles Times he referred to as an "Uncle Tom.")

That could be a real issue in San Diego. The Padres have only two other black players: Mike Cameron and Terrmel Sledge. And Bradley’s acquisition may mean the end of Sledge with the Padres.

The Padres, who acquired the multi-talented Bradley without a physical, are probably going on the theory that new employees tend not to create waves within their first three months on the job. Once the season is over, Bradley can leave as a free agent.

Since moving to Petco Park in 2004, the Padres have had amazing team chemistry while being a proven winner. Bradley certainly has the potential to blow up that chemistry lab.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I hope this guy's performance is better than his attitute. The Padres are taking big risks with Barrett and especially Bradley.