Milton Bradley wears earplugs to block the heckling

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Will Milton Bradley be playing for the M’s come May? From Saturday:

Milton Bradley was jeered by a few fans for the rest of the game after this error and at one point he even complained to the umpires to try and get the fans tossed. Later in the game Milton was seen at the plate with earplugs in as he once again failed to move the runner along in a key situation in the 8th where Chone Figgins led-off with a double and ended-up stranded by the meat of the order.

On the bright side, I can think of seven different worse ways Milton Bradley could have handled this, so good for him for the appeal to the umps and the earplugs.

Teams still don’t know if three-batter minimum rule will be in effect for 2020

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According to Athletics GM David Forst, Major League Baseball has still not informed teams whether or not the proposed three-batter-minimum rule will be in effect for the 2020 season, Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports.

The league and the players’ union came to an agreement back in March regarding a handful of rule changes with the three-batter-minimum rule among them. From the way it was discussed, it seemed like it was set in stone. If Forst is unsure, then the league clearly hasn’t done a good job of communicating that.

Slusser notes that the A’s are operating as if the rule will be in effect, as the club non-tendered lefty Ryan Buchter earlier this week. Buchter has a career 2.86 ERA with 235 strikeouts in 214 innings, but the bulk of that success has come against left-handed hitters. This past season 115 of the 198 total plate appearances (58 percent) against Buchter were taken by fellow lefties. He held lefties to a .728 OPS compared to .904 against righties. As a result, despite Buchter’s overall terrific numbers, the A’s felt the roster spot could be more effectively used with a different player given the proposed rule.

Some teams may not make the same assumption as the A’s. What if a team keeps its lefty specialist(s) on the roster or goes out and acquires such a player, not knowing whether or not the rule is in effect for the upcoming season?

Since it has been brought up publicly, the issue will likely be resolved quickly and we should all have clarity on the rules for the 2020 season.