After an unproductive week at the MLB winter meetings, the A's heated up the winter stove again: they traded minor league OF Andre Ethier to the Dodgers for major league OF Milton "Insert Game-Based Nickname Here" Bradley and major league IF Antonio Perez. That is: they traded a bird in the bush for two in the hand. Ethier was the AA Texas League player of the year--Bradley, the prize for the A's in this deal is 27 years old, and he hit .290/.350/.484 for the Dodgers last season. As is often the case when the A's acquire a player, Billy Beane is rumored to have coveted him for quite some time.
Bradley is worth coveting: he's an excellent defensive outfielder (he'll play right field, Nick Swisher will play first, and Dan Johnson will DH ), and a switch-hitter who should add right-handed power to a lineup that's been sorely lacking in that area. He Almost exactly one year after the A's traded away half their pitching staff for prospects, they've moved a prospect for a major-league talent. And Antonio Perez.
Bradley, of course, arrives in Oakland with what he calls "baggage" and what we might less delicately call "a reputation for being a colossal dick." See Susan Slusser's article for an exhaustive list of his run-ins with teammates, fans, managers, umpires and the 5-0; we're satisfied to recall his being traded from the Indians to LA for what seemed like insubordination during spring training in 2004, his throwing a water bottle at a Dodger Stadium and then taking off his jersey and storming off the field later that season, and his accusation last year that then-teammate Jeff Kent didn't understand African Americans, and draw the general conclusion that Milton Bradley is an out-of-control a$$hole. He's our out-of-control a$$hole now, though. Plus, Bay Area baseball has had good experiences with outfielders who don't get along with Jeff Kent, and it's not like we've never thrown anything at a Dodger fan. Dodger fans are annoying.
The encouraging trend this suggests, after the jump . . .