Milton Bradley's Losing Friends
A few stories have popped up since I wrote the last one, so let me update.
"I told him to take his uniform off," Lou said. "He threw his helmet
and smashed a water cooler, water flying all over. I just told him to
take his uniform off and go home. I followed him up into the clubhouse,
and we exchanged some words."
Lou added that he had seen enough and that he'd talk more with Milton tomorrow.
Apparently, the Cubs feel that Bradley is acting selfishly. GM Jim
Hendry talked with us in the runway after the game and said he wanted
players to be "all in."
I pressed him on that, and he said that "all in" means all for the
team. Some of Bradley's teammates also are beginning to wonder.
Alright, so we know for sure Lou sent him home. The "acting selfishly" perked up my ears though and that teammates are beginning to wonder. That led me to this gem from Alfonso Soriano courtesy of Muskat.
Alfonso Soriano said he'd never seen a player and manager fight the way Piniella and Bradley did.
"I hope he comes back and he can help the team to win," Soriano said
of Bradley. "If he's not that way, we don't need him. We have 25
players, we have to be on the same page. If he's not 100 percent to
help the team to win, we don't need him. If he's 100 percent and he
comes and wants to play, he's more than welcome."
Hey pot, meet the kettle. Let's start with Soriano refusing to move to left field a few years back for the Nationals before finally relenting... a real team player moment. Next there's Soriano's loose insistence on batting leadoff. Oh sure, he's stated in public he doesn't care where he bats as long as he stays in the same place but there's certainly some resistance on Soriano's part to get moved. If he was 100% on helping the team win, he'd stop trying to hit a home run every at-bat and would have asked long ago to get dropped to the bottom of the order to stop taking precious at-bats while he swings at everything that's pitched to him. There's also the part where he's worked on his defense so much that he's making Adam Dunn look like a good idea.
Moving back to Bradley, Lou's press conference highlights via Cubs.com can be seen here. Piniella indicates it's been a "common occurrence", although it's not clear whether he's suggesting it's common with just Bradley or the entire team, but it seems more like it's directed right at Bradley and he's been throwing these fits for awhile (most likely down in the clubhouse away from the cameras).
Sorry typing too fast.
I think while I get what you're saying with moving around a lot of baseball is very rhythm based and for many players moving around a lot could disrupt that. It's the same reason many players aren't cut out for phing or dhing since they need to be in the rhythm of the game to hit.
Of course then you have players like LaStella who are terrible as starters and should only PH. Really hope Madden doesn't get enthralled with him starting too much.
The players are required to perform with minimal thinking, relying on reflex, reaction, and muscle memory (or, as you say, rhythm). I think this point of view doesn't lend itself well to changing things up. Wearing Zany suits, on the other hand, does sound like fun and definitely keeps things interesting.
Scared me for a minute with your anagram for "Almora".
KKVG: Among the players at Extended Spring Training, Isaac Paredes is the most-impressive position-player from the Cubs 2015-16 IFA class (I'm not including OF Eddy Julio Martinez, because he skipped EXST and began the season at South Bend). Paredes has legit game power and handles himself well at SS, although I think he will likely eventually end-up at 2B or 3B (maybe not this year, but down-the-line). It is possible that Paredes will get assigned to Eugene (and skip AZL) next month, and I would say he's the only one of the Cubs 2015-16 IFA position players who could.
Having been a mediocre HS player, I would think at a professional level - and in their 20's - doesn't it sound actually FUN to have a chance to play different positions in a 162-Game, uber-long season?
It has to take some of the monotony out of the job and keep you on your toes.
In fact, the best manufacturing floor job satisfaction training theories include job rotation as a way to improve employee satisfaction.
I hope Maddon can keep it going.
(It's usually KK, because his DNA is more like ours.)
Not just Maddon, but the organization as a whole. If the rumors are to be believed, they did a good job of letting Baez learn that he needed to change his approach, and Baez has done a good job listening to their instructions an adapting. Hopefully the same is true of Alomar, who is ripping up AAA.
Previous management teams haven't been as good at this (e.g. Corey Patterson).
Man, this team makes you greedy. Going into Pittsburgh -- with Cole vs. Hammel Game 1 -- I was hoping for 2 out of 3. After winning the first 2 games 14-3, I now want a sweep. Same thing happened in STL. Very, very fun.
Repeating myself, but I give Maddon a lot of credit for Baez's success. Instead of talking about monster HRs and high K totals, he has talked up his defense, versatility and being a "special" player. The kid seems to have responded.
BOB: The attendance has taken a big hit since you left.
K-DUB: I think the Cubs might consider skipping Dylan Cease past South Bend and starting him at Myrtle Beach next season, especially if he gets some time at South Bend this season and pitches well there. As a southern kid with TJS history, pitching at Myrtle Beach in April is probably a lot more attractive than pitching in South Bend, but Cease can't go to Myrtle Beach if he isn't ready for Hi-A.
His story makes him someone I completely root for to succeed but it's interesting that he's not succeeding in the way anyone thought when he was just a prospect. Great defense and contact instead of power. I think failing so glaringly and getting sent back down might have been the best thing for him and his ego.
He still swings at too many balls out of the strike zone but he's making a lot more contact on them which I think is helped by the less violent swing. So we might not get all the HRs we were expecting but I'll gladly take what he's giving.
"KingKongVsGodzilla"? So - was there a winner?
Baez is looking like a pretty special player.
Love checking TCR for your writeups. Quick question - any of these 2015 positional IFAs stand out to you yet? I'm most specifically referring to Kwon, Sierra, Paredes, and Amaya, but I know there's a couple other guys from that class in EXST as well.