Diamondbacks pitching prospect Archie Bradley has the unenviable task of opposing 2014 NL MVP and Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw Saturday night in his major league debut against the Dodgers. As if simply making a big league debut isn’t stressful enough, he’ll have to get through the best pitcher of this generation if he wants a win. Bradley, though, seems to be looking forward to the challenge. Via MLB.com’s Steve Gilbert:
“I mean, it’s exciting,” Bradley said. “He’s one of the best, if not the best, in all of baseball. I just take it as a challenge, like why not start my career against someone like him? At the end of the day it’s about keeping them from scoring and he’s going to do the same. So it’s just about pitching my game.”
Bradley pitched well during Cactus League play this spring, posting a 1.61 ERA and a 14/6 K/BB ratio in 22 1/3 innings. His performance gave the D’Backs enough confidence to trade Trevor Cahill to the Braves, opening up a starting rotation spot.
Entering this season, Bradley was rated the #11 overall prospect by Baseball Prospectus. The 22-year-old was also rated #15 overall by MLB.com and #25 by Baseball America.
To make things more difficult, Bradley will also have to face Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez, who is seeing beach balls to start the season. Gonzalez is 11-for-18 with five home runs and 11 RBI. Three of those home runs came in one game, Wednesday against the Padres.
Buster Posey has opted out of the 2020 MLB season. The San Francisco Giants have issued a statement saying that they “fully support Buster’s decision. Buster is an integral part of our team and will be sorely missed, but we look forward to having him back in 2021.”
Posey and his wife are adopting identical twin girls who were born prematurely and who are currently in the NICU and will be for some time. They are stable, but obviously theirs is not a situation that would be amenable to the demands of a baseball season as it’s currently structured.
Poset had missed all of the Giants’ workouts so far, Recently he said, “I think there’s still some reservation on my end as well. I think I want to see kind of how things progress here over the next couple of weeks. I think it would be a little bit maybe naive or silly not to gauge what’s going on around you, not only around you here but paying attention to what’s happening in the country and different parts of the country.” He said that he talked about playing with his wife quite a great deal but, really, this seems like a no-brainer decision on his part.
In opting out Posey is foregoing the 60-game proration of his $21.4 million salary. He is under contract for one more year at $21.4 million as well. The Giants can pick up his 2022 club option for $22 million or buy him out for $3 million.
A veteran of 11 seasons, Posey has earned about $124 million to date. Which seems to be the common denominator with players who have opted out thus far. With the exception of Joe Ross and Héctor Noesí, the players to have opted out thus far have earned well above $10 million during their careers. Players that aren’t considered “high risk” and elect not to play do not get paid and do not receive service time.