Bradley's mom blames preschool racism, Mark De Rosa-love for Milton's troubles

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On at least one level I feel sorry for Milton Bradley, and that has to do with his mom, who simply won’t stop talking to the Chicago media about her son.

The latest? According to her, Bradley was distracted because his three year-old son was subjected to racist taunts. “Parents, teachers and their kids called him the n-word,” she said.  Tough preschool.  Also, says Ma Bradley, the fans hated him right off the bat because he wasn’t Mark DeRosa. “And he could see right away the fans didn’t accept him because they
wanted DeRosa, I think his name was, to be there. So he never really
felt accepted. He never felt comfortable at all.” Oh, and she also says that Bradley would like to play in Chicago again if given the chance.

I feel sorry for him because I could totally see my mom doing this. Except instead of racist toddlers and DeRosa envy, my mom would blame all of my struggles on gas or “a change in the weather,” which are the two things she has blamed for every bit of negativity that has happened in her lifetime, be it the space shuttle exploding, inflation, or the Kennedy assassination.

I’d say I can’t wait to hear more from Bradley’s mom, but my guess is that Milton is going to spend a good bit of time today arranging for her phone number to be changed.

Julio Urias to undergo season-ending shoulder surgery

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The news has gone from bad to worse for Dodgers’ left-hander Julio Urias, who is scheduled for anterior capsule surgery on his left shoulder next Tuesday and expected to be sidelined through the middle of the 2018 season. His MRI came back negative on Wednesday, giving the Dodgers some hope that the 20-year-old’s bout of shoulder inflammation wasn’t masking any structural damage, but the pain lingered several days later and prompted further concern from the club. The procedure will be performed by Dr. Neal ElAttrache.

Urias was optioned to Triple-A Oklahoma City in late May and placed on the disabled list with left shoulder discomfort several weeks into his assignment. At the major league level, he owned a 5.40 ERA, 5.4 BB/9 and 4.2 SO/9 through 23 1/3 innings, going 0-2 in five starts with Los Angeles. He made a brief rebound in Triple-A, posting three wins and striking out 17 of 67 batters in 17 1/3 innings before landing on the DL.

It’s a tough blow for the southpaw, who had yet to hit his stride in the majors before getting sidelined with shoulder issues. The Dodgers were especially mindful of this outcome for Urias, and had taken preventative measures to protect his arm by establishing a strict innings limit last season. According to club president Andrew Friedman, there’s a small silver lining here: while Urias’ injury will keep him out of work for at least 12 months, he doesn’t appear to have sustained any damage to his labrum or rotator cuff, and could be facing a much more streamlined recovery process as a result. Whether he’ll be able to rebound once he takes the mound again remains to be seen.

Tigers release Francisco Rodriguez

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Tigers’ right-handed reliever Francisco Rodriguez was released on Friday, per a team announcement. The club recalled fellow right-hander Bruce Rondon from Triple-A Toledo in a corresponding move.

The former closer got the boot after losing his closing role in early May, giving left-hander Justin Wilson a chance to impress at the back end of the bullpen. It’s been a rough year for Rodriguez, who manufactured six blown saves and a 7.82 ERA, 3.9 BB/9 and 8.2 SO/9 over 25 1/3 innings for the Tigers. The final straw, it seemed, came with Robinson Cano‘s grand slam in the seventh inning of the Tigers’ 6-9 loss to the Mariners on Thursday.

While the demotion to a clean-up role and an apparent lack of communication caused Rodriguez considerable frustration, he’s two years removed from his last dominant performance as a major league closer and has shown few signs of returning to form. His recent slump doesn’t diminish the impressive totals he’s racked up over his 16-year career — 437 saves and six All-Star nominations among them — but if he can’t break out of it soon, he may not receive the kind of high leverage role he’s seeking with another big league team, either.