Last we heard of Milton Bradley, he was being accused of threatening to kill his wife and then vehemently denying those accusations.
A real pleasant situation.
But this is baseball’s hot stove season and Bradley just so happens to be a major league free agent.
Rumors rest for no man. Or something.
According to Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times, the Rockies met Wednesday with Bradley’s agents. There’s no telling how serious the chat was or whether the Rox actually have interest in bringing Bradley aboard this winter, but it’s fairly clear that Bradley wants to return to baseball and there’s a chance he’ll get at least some amount of consideration from teams desperate for outfield depth.
Bradley, 33, batted just .218/.313/.356 with two home runs and 13 RBI in 115 plate appearances for the Mariners this year before they cut him loose in mid-May. He posted a .378 on-base percentage over 124 games with the Cubs in 2009 and a .436 OBP across 126 games for the Rangers in 2008.
Everyone is well aware of how good Angels outfielder Mike Trout is at the game of baseball. The 26-year-old is already an all-time great, having won two MVP awards — and arguably deserving of two others — and the 2012 Rookie of the Year Award. He has accrued 54.2 WAR, per Baseball Reference, which is right around the threshold for a Hall of Fame career. Trout does it all: he draws walks, he hits for average, he hits for power, he steals bases, he plays good defense.
But here’s an achievement that is amazing even for a player like Trout: he has yet to strike out this spring. In 41 Cactus League plate appearances, he has 10 hits (including a triple and two homers) and six walks with zero strikeouts. Across his career, Trout has a 21.5 percent strikeout rate, right around the league average. He isn’t usually such a stickler for avoiding the punch-out, but this spring he is.
To put this in perspective, 134 players this spring have struck out at least 10 times, according to MLB.com. 938 players have struck out at least once. The only other players to have taken at least 10 at-bats without striking out this spring are Humberto Arteaga (Royals, 23 AB), Tony Cruz (Reds, 18 AB), Oscar Hernandez (Red Sox, 10 AB), and Jacob Stallings (Pirates, 18 AB).
According to Angels assistant hitting coach Paul Sorrento, the lack of strikeouts hasn’t been a conscious effort from Trout, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. Ho hum. The best player in baseball is apparently getting even better.