Jackie Bradley Jr. makes sense for the Tampa Bay Rays
It wouldn’t be surprising to see the Tampa Bay Rays take a flier on the outfielder their former executive, Chaim Bloom, just released.
Kevin Kiermaier is out for the season after undergoing hip surgery at the end of July, Harold Ramirez is recovering from a fractured thumb, and Manuel Margot has been on the 60-Day IL with a right knee sprain since June. As of last week, Margot was running, but Rays manager Kevin Cash “stressed that it’s early in the recovery process.” Their best-case scenario is if he’s able to come back at the end of the month.
Scrambling to fill the field, the Rays signed former Phillies outfielder Roman Quinn at the end of July. He’s already had minor and/or major-league stints with the Miami Marlins, Phillies, and Kansas City Royals this season. They also acquired David Peralta from the Arizona Diamondbacks and Jose Siri from the Houston Astros at the deadline.
Bradley hasn’t hit well at Tropicana Field throughout his career (.169/.235/.246, .481 OPS), but he’s been successful in the postseason, including against the Houston Astros, whom the Rays could face this fall if they hold on to their wild card.
But above all, Bradley would be a logical fit for one of baseball’s cheapest teams because he would barely cost them anything. Since the Sox released him, they are obligated to pay the remainder of his contract, meaning any team that signs him only has to pay him the proration of the minimum salary. No harm in giving him a shot.