Cub fans and Milton Bradley have one thing in common: they both can’t wait for him to go home. The Milton Bradley experience has been the biggest disaster in a season of disasters for Cubs general manager Jim Hendry in 2009.
I know he’s not media friendly, he’s run himself out of nearly every organization he’s ever played for, and he says some stuff that angers people, but can we get a little reality injected into this analysis? Bradley is getting destroyed as a massive disappointment while posting a .387 on base percentage. Sure, the power hasn’t translated to Chicago, and the Cubs had to be hoping for more than a .350 wOBA from the guy, but he’s been an above average hitter and a decent enough fielder for them this year.
In just over 400 plate appearances, he’s been worth +1.2 wins to the Cubs, which translates to $5.4 million in salary. Factor in his expected September production, and he’ll probably end the year with a performance worth around $7 million – less than what the Cubs are paying him, but not anything close to the biggest disaster on the team.
Alfonso Soriano has performed below replacement this year. He earned – sorry, was paid – $16 million this year, and there’s $90 million left on the final five years of his contract. His performance suggests he owes the Cubs $3.3 million for taking 0.7 wins off their total for 2009, so Soriano has cost the Cubs almost $20 million this year. Bradley could cuss out every fan in Wrigley and still not match Soriano for disastrous results this year.
Things have gone wrong in Chicago this year, and Bradley makes an easy target for criticism, much of it earned. But regardless of whether he likes the fans or media, Bradley hasn’t been the thing that caused the club to collapse. It’s hard to win a bunch of baseball games when your “superstar” left fielder plays like he belongs in the minors.
Just because Bradley makes himself an easy target doesn’t mean he’s the right one.
Print This Post