Chasen Bradford Came Up Big For The B-Mets To Close Out The Clincher
“Life is not always a matter of holding good cards, but sometimes, playing a poor hand well.”
That’s a Chasen Bradford tweet I found as I searched to find something about the B-Mets’ relief pitcher. I was curious to know whether Bradford was talking about the cards he was dealt, a 35th round draft pick by the Mets in 2011, or just life’s cards folks are dealt in general. Whatever cards Bradford was dealt he’s playing them with a deft hand this summer in Binghamton.
Bradford pitched for the Gators of Central Florida in college where command issues clouded his future baseball potential. The 6’1” righthander went 17-7 during his stay as a Gator earning 5 saves but too many free passes and a high WHIP left unanswered questions.
After originally failing to make the squad out of spring training for Savannah in 2012, Bradford fought his way back on the roster and had a solid season as a Sand Gnat. Bradford worked entirely in relief making 37 appearances with a 2.47 ERA and a 1.118 WHIP and has been turning heads ever since.
St. Lucie was next up for the Met prospect this spring. Bradford shined in 30 relief appearances going 6-2 with 3 saves that earned a promotion to Binghamton. Bradford’s command issues seem to be a thing of the past as he fanned 43 batters while walking only 9 in St. Lucie.
Bradford has been undaunted with the fabled jump to the Double-A level, pitching lights out in 16 appearances as a B-Met thus far. The right-handed set up man has a 3-1 record with a minuscule 0.46 ERA and a flashy 0.966 WHIP. With Jeff Walter’s the King of Saves in all of minor league baseball, Bradford doesn’t get much of a chance to close a contest although he did pick up his first Double-A save over the weekend.
I got an opportunity to watch Bradford in two outings during the current B-Met homestand. The Binghamton reliever threw one inning of scoreless relief in the B-Mets 1-0 victory over New Britain on Friday and picked up a victory in relief Monday night with a second scoreless inning when Binghamton topped Bowie, 3-2.
Scoreless relief outings are nothing new for Bradford this summer. In fact, Bradford has not surrendered a run out the Binghamton pen since July 12th.
Bradford throws a fastball that regularly registered at 90-92 mph with off-speed pitch selections to compliment his quick stuff. A high 70’s breaking pitch was very effective for Bradford in the games I observed.
With names like Syndergaard, Verrett, Goedell, Gorski, Kolarek, Huchingson and Walters headlining a potent B-Met pitching staff, it would be easy to lose a guy like Chasen Bradford in the shuffle. That would be to overlook a trump card in the Binghamton pitching card deck.
@MetsMerized blessed to be here and blessed to have such an amazing opportunity with such a awesome group of guys.
— Chasen Bradford (@cbBaseball29) August 17, 2013
About the Author: John Bernhardt
John Bernhardt is a retired public school teacher and administrator, who still coaches high school baseball. Growing up in a Yankees household, Bernhardt was an ardent Mickey Mantle and Yogi Berra fan. When the Yankees fired Yogi in his first season as the Bomber manager, curiosity turned to passion when the Mets signed Berra as a player/coach and he has pulled for the Mets ever since. In retirement, John writes the sports for a local weekly, The Catskill Mountain News and hosts Tip-Off, a Friday morning sports hour, from 8:00-9:00 on WIOX, 91.3 F.M.
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