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The Milton Bradley Problem
Add another black-eye to Milton Bradley's tenure with the LA Dodgers. The Daily Breeze is reporting that police went to his house three times on domestic violence calls this summer. In one instance, Bradley allegedly choked his pregnant wife and bloodied her lip. No charges have been filed though. If there was ever a reason to keep Milton Bradley, this should eliminate it.
Bradley clearly has very serious problems that will take more than a few anger management classes to solve. Let's remember that he hurled baseballs onto the field, threw a water bottle at a fan's feet, called a black reporter an "Uncle Tom", spent three days in an Ohio jail in the offseason for disorderly conduct after violating terms of his probation, got kicked out of a minor league game for arguing balls and strikes on a rehab assignment, bashed Jeff Kent by minimizing the importance of being a Hall-of-Famer, and then when management told him to shut up he defied Tracy, DePodesta, and McCourt, and effectively called Kent a racist while speaking about himself in third person. In the process he has pissed off just about every umpire in Major League Baseball, leading him to get few calls. He has been traded away from both Montreal and Cleveland because he has exhausted management's patience there.
Now he's exhausted it here.
We wanted to believe that Milton Bradley could be a good as a Dodger. Few doubt his skills. He's a disciplined hitter (believe it or not) who can hit for power. He covers an enormous amount of ground in the outfield, and makes some spectacular athletic plays. With his skills, he comes at a bargain price.
We also thought that just maybe, if he went to LA, he'd find himself. He's an LA native, and might have felt more comfortable here than in Cleveland.
We were wrong.
Milton Bradley is a time bomb just waiting to explode. LAist hates to see someone of his value go away for nothing, but it appears any value he's had on the field is completely offset by his value off it.
LAist still believes Paul DePodesta made the right decision to trade for Bradley in the first place. Sometimes players can come around when you give them a second chance. He didn't cost much. They didn't give up that much for him. He was an important part of the Dodgers playoff team last year. The Dodgers failings this season go well beyond Milton Bradley.
But it is unfortunately time for the Dodgers to cut ties with Milton Bradley, and nontender him after the season. He needs to be punished for his misdeeds, and certainly doesn't deserve to have the privilege of being a Major League Baseball player for a while.