June 15, 2021

Zaika

Livingston

Could Jackie Bradley Jr. reunite with Red Sox?

19 min read
Could Jackie Bradley Jr. reunite with Red Sox?




Steve Adams, MLB Trade Rumors



The Red Sox aren’t ruling out a reunion with Jackie Bradley Jr., as general manager Brian O’Halloran told reporters Monday that the longtime Sox center fielder is “definitely on our radar” (link via MassLive.com’s Christopher Smith). Bradley has been linked to Toronto (who hasn’t?) and Houston thus far in the offseason, and the center fielder himself told former teammate Will Middlebrooks in a recent podcast appearance that he’s heard from multiple clubs in free agency. Bradley, 30, is a perennial defensive standout who posted a quality .283/.364/.450 slash this past season, although as is often the case when looking at a small sample of 2020 data, that output was fueled by a frenetic hot streak to close out the year. Bradley hit .248/.316/.352 through his first 117 plate appearances before breaking out with a .326/.420/.570 slash in his final 100 plate appearances. Bradley hasn’t been the most consistent hitter, but over the past six years he hasn’t seen his wRC+ or OPS+ dip lower than 89 in a full season. From 2015-20, Bradley has been a roughly league-average hitter by those same measures (.247/.331/.438 in 2751 plate appearances).



a baseball player holding a bat on a field: Jackie Bradley Jr. hit .248/.316/.352 through his first 117 plate appearances before breaking out with a .326/.420/.570 slash in his final 100 plate appearances in 2020.


© John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports
Jackie Bradley Jr. hit .248/.316/.352 through his first 117 plate appearances before breaking out with a .326/.420/.570 slash in his final 100 plate appearances in 2020.

Some more free-agent chatter as the virtual Winter Meetings continue…

  • “Several teams” have shown interest in southpaw Cole Hamels, Jon Heyman of MLB Network tweets. The soon-to-be 37-year-old is coming off a season almost fully lost to arm injuries, so he was unable to live up to the $18 million contract the Braves handed him last winter. However, as someone who has been a terrific starter for most of his career, Hamels could be an interesting buy-low pickup for a team if he’s healthy. Hamels would consider throwing a showcase for teams if it’s possible, according to Heyman.
  • More from Heyman, who writes (on Twitter) that there is interest in righty Felix Hernandez. Although King Felix, then with Atlanta, opted out of last season, it’s “likely” he’ll return to the mound next year. While the 34-year-old had to settle for a minor-league contract last winter, the longtime Mariner and former AL Cy Young winner had a legitimate shot at earning a Braves rotation spot before he decided not to play.
  • Right-hander Brandon Kintzler and the Marlins have mutual interest in a reunion, SportsGrid’s Craig Mish reports (Twitter links), but the Fish might not be eyeing him as a closing option this time around. While Kintzler notched a dozen saves for Miami last year, Mish notes that Miami is hoping to add a hard-throwing option to take up ninth-inning duties in 2021. Kintzler, 36, posted a 2.22 ERA in 24 1/3 innings this past season but managed just 14 strikeouts against 11 walks. Kintzler’s hefty 57.3 percent grounder rate helps to offset his lack of missed bats, but his 91.3 mph average velocity on his sinker doesn’t really align with the Marlins’ apparent desire to add a power arm for the ninth inning.
  • There is plenty of interest in lefty Tyler Anderson, per Heyman (Twitter link). Anderson became a free agent last week when the Giants non-tendered him. The 30-year-old had been projected to earn anywhere from $2.4 million to $4.3 million in arbitration, but the Giants decided that was too rich for someone who has historically been a back-end starter. Also an ex-Rockie, Anderson has posted a 4.65 ERA/4.46 FIP with 8.04 K/9 and 2.94 BB/9 in 456 2/3 innings.

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