Red Sox manager John Farrell has said he would like to have the bulk of his roster decisions made by Thursday. Whether or not the short-term fate of Jackie Bradley is decided by then remains to be seen. But Bradley continues to make the decision difficult for the Sox.
That was not his goal coming into camp, however.
“No, I was just trying to make a good impression, with the new staff,” said Bradley, after Wednesday’s game, a 5-1 loss to the Marlins, in which he went 1-for-4 with a walk and a strikeout.
“I didn’t even really think about or fathom the possibility of playing in the big leagues. it was just more make a good impression, get my work in, and learn from the veteran guys and see what they have to offer.
Being in the position of forcing the organization to make a decision on him, was not what Bradley, who turns 23 on April 19, had in mind coming into camp.
“No, never really I guess crossed my mind,” he said. “ was just excited to be able to go to big league camp. Then all this came about. it’s been a good run. I’m just enjoying it, just trying to improve every single day. Can’t stress that enough. Just working and patience is a key virtue, so we’ll see what happens.”
Bradley is averaging a hit in each of his Grapefruit League games, going 25-for-60 in 25 games, batting .431. He entered the game with a .523 on-base percentage, second among major league qualifiers.
“I feel good, “ he said. “I don’t really know the chances. I don’t really worry about it. I sleep well at night.”
The Sox, he said, have not hinted at what their decision on him might be.
“No, they’re pretty good at keeping secrets, man,” he said with a laugh.
He’s gotten people talking about him, though.
“I hope it means good things, because, I don’t know, I don’t want anybody to put a whole bunch of expectations on me,” he said. “I just enjoy playing ball. I’m having fun and I’m going to do the best I can every single day.”
· Jonny Gomes’ third home run of the spring, a two-out shot to left off Marlins starter Kevin Slowey in the second inning, accounted for the Sox lone run of the game. Gomes went 2-for-3 and is now batting .300, going 15-for-49 in 17 Grapefruit League games.
· Andrew Miller pitched a scoreless fifth inning, giving up one hit. He has not allowed a run in his last four outings, spanning 3 2/3 innings.
· Andrew Bailey pitched a scoreless sixth inning with one hit and two strikeouts. He has allowed three runs in 9 2/3 innings this spring, but none in his last seven outings, spanning 6 2/3 innings.
· Junichi Tazawa pitched a scoreless eighth inning, with one strikeout.
· The Marlins scored their runs off Daniel Bard and Ryan Rowland-Smith. Bard gave up three in one inning, and now has a 6.75 ERA. Rowland-Smith gave up two in the ninth.
· Pedro Ciriaco entered the game as a defensive replacement for shortstop Jose Iglesias. It was the first game action since March 14 for Ciriaco, who had been sidelined by back spasms.