Milton Bradley, Jim Hendry, and Britney Spears

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Milton Bradley has made headlines lately for basically refusing to stop talking about how miserable he was in Chicago, but did have some nice words for one member of the Cubs:

I have nothing bad to say about Jim Hendry. He gave me $30 million. God bless Jim Hendry and his family.

Most of the stuff Bradley says makes me roll my eyes and Cubs fans obviously have a much harsher reaction, but he has a point here. Bradley’s abrasive personality and various other issues shouldn’t have surprised anyone last year because he’d already worn out his welcome with six other teams in nine seasons, yet Cubs general manager Jim Hendry still handed him a $30 million deal.
Fans, media members, former teammates, and ex-coaches have been ripping Bradley to shreds, and rightfully so in most cases, but lost in all that is the big-league GM who gave $30 million to an emotionally unstable, oft-injured outfielder with a lengthy track record of issues and incidents. Bradley was being Bradley, but in theory at least Hendry should have known better.
If you pay $500 for tickets to a Britney Spears concert and she spends two hours lip-syncing terrible songs while prancing around in outfits that no longer fit you can certainly boo her off the stage and then complain for the entire car ride home, but ultimately what did you expect when you paid $500 for tickets to a Britney Spears concert. Hendry knowingly paid $30 million for the Milton Bradley experience and the Cubs certainly got it.

Video: Starling Marte refuses to take first base after being hit by pitch

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Pirates outfielder Starling Marte was hit on the hand by a Jack Flaherty pitch in the fourth inning of Tuesday night’s game against the Cardinals. Rather than take first base, Marte — who came to the plate with a runner on first base — insisted to home plate umpire Bruce Dreckman that the ball hit the knob of the bat, not his hand. Marte was allowed to continue his at-bat, though manager Clint Hurdle came out to discuss the ruling with Dreckman. Marte eventually grounded into a fielder’s choice. He then got caught attempting to steal second base and the Pirates scored zero runs in the inning.

According to Baseball Prospectus, a team that has runners on first and second with no outs is expected to score 1.55 runs. Having a runner on first base with one out yields 0.56 expected runs. Marte essentially cost his team a run by rejecting first base. Oops.