SARASOTA, Fla. – Another day, another Jackie Bradley legend is born.
This time Bradley came off the bench with a pinch-hit two-run single up the middle in the eighth inning against superb Orioles reliever Pedro Strop and then banged a triple in the ninth to right field against the wall against minor league lefty Chris Petrini.
A day after he homered against Cliff Lee, but also struck out twice against lefthanders, Bradley made up for it with the single and triple. Coming off the bench, no less.
“No it certainly didn’t (slow him down),” Farrell said. “Against a good pitcher in Strop and a lefty who had decent stuff. He takes a strike and is not afraid to hit deep into the count and gets a breaking ball in the middle of the plate (for the triple). Very consistent approach. And even more impressive was that after yesterday where some lefthanders tied him up a little bit, he came back against a lefthander with some quality stuff and put a good swing on the ball.”
Bradley said after the 12-9 loss to the Orioles, “I definitely wanted to take a pitch. I wanted to see if you could work out a walk. He looked like he was throwing strikes to the first two batters. But I still wanted to see a pitch, try to make him work a little bit.”
Bradley had to sit most of the game, but by the time he got in he was anxious to take part in the hit-fest that took place on a sunny, windy day at Ed Smith Stadium.
“Yeah, you never know when you’re going to be called upon so might as well be ready. They told me I was going in. Had to get my mind set right and the rest was history,” he said.
At this point it would be an upset if Bradley didn’t make the team.
“Looking forward to hearing,” Bradley said. “Yeah, you always want to know where you’re going to go just so you can make arrangements, if you got to get an apartment or something. But everything’s at the last minute. So not only are y’all waiting, I am too.”
How about a host family? There would be no shortage of offers.
“Yeah, why not. The living room couch. I’ll do it,” Bradley said.