Even after a fourth straight start where he surrendered at least four earned runs and failed to last more than five innings, Arizona Diamondbacks manager Chip Hale says there are no plans to send 22-year-old right-handed pitcher Archie Bradley to the minors.
After starting the season with a 2-0 record and boasting a 2.13 ERA through his first four starts, Bradley has plummeted back to earth. Since returning from the 15-day DL after nearly getting his head taken off by a line drive hit by Colorado Rockies outfielder Carlos Gonzalez on April 28, Bradley is 0-3 with a 10.91 ERA through 15.2 innings.
“We’re really going to keep working with him. That’s all we can do,” Hale said when he joined Burns and Gambo on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM Tuesday. ‘Hark’ (pitching coach Mike Harkey) and ‘Stott’ (bullpen coach Mel Stottlemyre) had put some real hard work in and I thought it paid off. [Bradley] didn’t walk as many guys, he threw strikes, they just hit them. Now we have to get the fastball command better, because if you looked where the glove was set up and where the pitches were going, they were not going in [the right] direction a lot. So we’re going to have to get that command better and his secondary pitches — changeup and breaking ball — have to tighten up.
But, at the moment, a stint in the minors for Bradley isn’t on the table.
“I don’t see that trip [to the minors] right now. That hasn’t been mentioned. That’s something that Dave [Stewart] and Tony [La Russa] would come to us and want to do and that’s going to come down from the front office.”
Though being sent to the minors doesn’t appear imminent for the Muskogee, Oklahoma native, Hale admitted that perhaps he and the organization made a mistake by not sending Bradley on a rehab assignment before making his return to the big league mound following the injury.
“I was actually with our scouts today in our draft meetings, just to check it out and the boards and see what we have going,” Hale said. “Bob Gebhard — who’s been with us for years and years and I’ve known since I was a player in Minnesota — mentioned to me that maybe that probably would have been a…now that we’ve seen what happened…that we should have probably sent him down for a rehab [assignment].
“It probably would have been better.”