Yeah, I did a double take too, but check out what FOX’s Ken Rosenthal is reporting:
Multiple teams are in contact the Cubs about outfielder Milton Bradley, with one source saying, “You would be shocked at the level of interest.” The Cubs remain confident that they can trade Bradley without assuming the vast majority of the $21 million remaining on his contract over the next two years.
I guess this all turns on the definition of “vast majority.” Is that 60%? 75%? There’s probably no way you take Bradley if you have to pay him $10-$12 million, but if you’re a team that could use a DH, would you go for $6 million? $7 million? That’s a closer call, especially considering that it buys you two years of what could very well be above-average production. At that amount, most teams could simply cut Bradley and eat the money without too much heartburn if he acts like a knucklehead. And it may be just on the good side of the Cubs’ “vast majority” line.
My friend Rob Neyer is fond of saying that teams don’t trade players. They trade contracts. A contract at $3-$4m a year for a decent bat is worth trading for, even if that contract and bat are attached to Milton Bradley.
The Rays have acquired first baseman C.J. Cron from the Angels for a player to be named later, the teams announced Saturday. In a corresponding move, the Rays cleared a roster spot for Cron by designating outfielder Corey Dickerson for assignment.
Cron wasn’t expected to factor prominently in the Angels’ plans for 2018, especially given the recent addition of pitcher/hitter Shohei Ohtani and the projected Luis Valbuena/Albert Pujols combo at first base. The 28-year-old infielder wasn’t overly impressive during his fourth season in Anaheim, either, slashing .248/.305/.437 with 16 home runs and 0.5 fWAR through 373 plate appearances in 2017. He’ll give the Rays a platoon option with fellow first baseman Brad Miller, though neither Cron nor Miller have looked particularly adept against left-handed pitching lately.
Dickerson, meanwhile, is coming off of a banner season with the Rays. The 29-year-old outfielder enjoyed his first All-Star nomination in 2017, rounding out the year with a .282/.325/.490 batting line and career-best 27 home runs and 2.6 fWAR in 629 PA. Some have already speculated that a trade is in the works; barring that, it’s a head-scratching move to make considering his clear offensive value to the team.