Over an 11 year big league career, sidearm reliever Chad Bradford has fashioned a respectable resume, enough to the point where the Orioles might consider dealing him to a contender as the trade deadline looms closer. That said, Bradford walked the thin line between professional pride and what Billy Wagner might call “a lack of accountability” (though perhaps not those exact words) when bailing on the inevitable media scrum that followed his serving up career HR no. 500 to Manny Ramirez. From MLB.com’s Pete Kerzel :
“You can’t change it, can you?” Bradford asked Sunday. “I don’t eat up giving up home runs. I don’t eat that up at all.”
Bradford left Camden Yards before talking to reporters Saturday night.
On Sunday morning, the veteran reliever didn’t mince words about his place in baseball’s annals.
“Bad pitch, [Ramirez] hit a home run,” said Bradford, adding that he hadn’t watched replays of the event.
“I’m just trying to get an out,” he said. “I’m not thinking about what number [Ramirez is sitting on]. It just didn’t work out.”
Bradford becomes the third Orioles pitcher to to allow an opposing player’s 500th home run, joining Stu Miller (who gave up Mickey Mantle’s on May 14, 1967) and Mike Cuellar (who surrendered Harmon Killebrew’s on Aug. 10, 1971).
There is, however, something to be said for maintaining a sense of composure, even when history is taking place right in front of you.
With Manny having hit HR no. 501 this afternoon, a two-run shot off Baltimore’s Brian Burres, the Red Sox are leading 7-3 in the 5th inning at their home away from home, Camden Yards (presumably, all the Orioles fans were in NY for the Ponytail show this weekend). Though touched up by a two-run HR by gun-toting Luke Scott, El Barto is in line for his 3rd win of the year.