Bradley Jr. makes another mind-boggling catch

Bradley Jr. makes another mind-boggling catch
July 9, 2014, 11:30 pm
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BOSTON -- You're going to want to sit down for this.

Even if you saw it before, even if you saw it live, hell, even if you were in the bleachers in right-center field and had a front-row seat to Jackie Bradley Jr.'s David Blaine levitation catch in the second inning of Wednesday's 5-4 win over the White Sox, you're going to want to kick back and enjoy it again.

Go ahead. We'll wait.

That man standing at third with the confounded look, the one wondering how a cornrowed comet could be playing center field at Fenway Park, was Chicago's Alejandro De Aza. He never ended up scoring thanks to Bradley Jr.'s soaring catch.

Though it was still early in the game at that point, given the way it ended, Bradley Jr. certainly helped keep the game winnable for the Red Sox.

"That saved at least a run," Daniel Nava said. "We may not even be in this situation if he doesn't make that catch. One of the best catches of the year, right? Golly."

There's been a handful of them this season. Just last Sunday he made a twisting, leaping grab to rob Manny Machado of extra bases that had everyone talking.

"I don't want to say we're taking anything for granted, but I think at this point in time, we're not completely surprised by anything like that," manager John Farrell said. "Whether it's one up against the wall when he doubles a guy off first base a few homestands ago. A headlong dive like tonight. Just an outstanding center fielder defensively."

As the All-Star break approaches, Bradley Jr. has established himself as one of the best defensive center fielders in the game. Coming into Wednesday, he led all American Leaguers at his position in ultimate zone rating (11.7) and defensive runs saved (nine), according to Fangraphs.com.

He is tied for the Major League lead in outfield assists. With 10 total, he has four more than the next highest number for any center fielder in baseball. And with five double plays, he has two more than the next best MLB outfielders. Already he has more double plays than any Red Sox outfielder since Jim Rice had five in 1983.

Bradley Jr. is a show unto himself in centerfield and he proved it again on Wednesday night.

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