Just when is enough finally enough? Like the appendix, Jackie Bradley and Blake Swihart serve no useful function for the Boston Red Sox.
Does the appendix have a useful purpose? The biologist can debate the issue, but removal apparently has no impact on the functioning of your body. There is no known purpose for the appendix, it apparently does nothing of significance and can eventually do serious harm.
The Boston Red Sox currently have two players who are a baseball version of the appendix. From what I have witnessed this season Jackie Bradley and Blake Swihart serve no useful purpose. Both degrade and not enhance the product on the field and like the appendix, they should be removed before further harm is done.
Bradley is simply lost with a bat in his hand. The fallback situation is his defense, but Bradley just may be overrated in that aspect. Bradley is far from the best defensive center fielder in the American League and has never been ranked the best via metrics or a Gold Glove.
As a hitter, Bradley brings nothing to the plate (pun intended). You will get the occasional home run or hard double, but there is a remoteness between any pitcher punishment. Bradley may be the most ineffectual hitter in the AL. After a less than stellar 2017 (.245) and 2018 where even the Mendoza Line appears as distant as Alpha Centauri.
When is enough just finally enough? Apparently, with Boston, the surge of run production has insulated the inept Bradley from being excommunicated to Pawtucket (AAA) or simply shipped elsewhere for maybe a Costco membership for Dave Dombrowski.
Swihart apparently is another addition to highly publicized prospects who performed somewhere between very little and nothing. A Lars Anderson for this decade. Swihart has been given much leeway over injury issues, but is healthy to play, but his batting average is certainly not the picture of health.
The more Swihart plays the more his offensive incompetence becomes visible. The Red Sox have moved Swihart around to either build up value or for protection elsewhere. Swihart is just defensively ordinary and his offense is remarkably less proficient than Bradley’s. Swihart’s value is minimal. If you have no above average defensive skill set and your hitting needs baseball Viagra then just forget about any return.
I would be quite tempted to add Heath Hembree to the appendix list, but will await his next bullpen meltdown – based on history this may be a very short wait. With Swihart and Bradley’s options do exist. First off is Swihart who is just a repetitive version of Brock Holt and Eduardo Nunez. I most certainly expect Swihart to go once Dustin Pedroia returns.
With Bradley, the issue is one of money. Tzu-Wei Lin did little for Boston in his early season stint, but he can play all positions and play them well. The money is minimal and for Bradley, his price tag is $6.5 MM which may limit suitors. Boston could bite the fiscal bullet and get Rusney Castillo back to Boston. The only way to balance the books is to find a possible taker for Drew Pomeranz and his $8.5 MM. Teams become pitching desperate and Boston could have a market for Pomeranz.
Neither Bradley nor Swihart is making this a better team. The Red Sox need to look at other options so that the post-All-Star roster is far more solid.