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Dye vs. Bradley

By George Ofman

There are two general managers with two dilemmas. The one on the North Side has a much bigger one than the one to his south.

Jim Hendry has to get rid of you-know-who.

Ken Williams let go a World Series hero.

And it's possible both players could wind up teammates next season.

Talk about schizophrenic symmetry!

One guy is total class. The other is a total ass.

Williams must replace the very likely departing Jermaine Dye.

Hendry must find a taker for Milton Bradley.

Marion prison is not an option.

Dye is done on the South Side because he costs too much. Such is baseball. When the GM says we don't have the money and the guy you're letting go just made $11 million, economics become more important than RBIs.

Bradley is done on the North Side because he costs too much too, but in this case, the Cubs will be forced to eat some of his salary in order to push his sorry act out of town. It won't taste very good to new owner Tom Ricketts, but if Bradley stayed, Ricketts would have gas every day.

The dilemma for Hendry is much greater than for Williams. He's trying to sell another team the equivalent of the H1-N1 virus. The extra money is there for the cure, if there is one. The Mets say they don't want anything to do with him. Gee, I wonder why. You mean New York City wouldn't embrace another loser? Doesn't mean the Mets won't be part of a three-way trade.

How about Texas? How about Jermaine Dye signing a free agent contract there? Think if the Cubs ship Bradley there first Dye might say, "Are you kidding me?"

Dye would deserve much better than to have Bradley in the same state, let alone the same locker room.

Despite having a very depressing last two months of last season, Dye is a first-class pro who played first-class baseball for the Sox. He's a man to admire for the way he handles himself on and off the field. He was their World Series MVP and followed that up with a monster 2006 in which he belted 44 homers and drove in 120 runs. Even though he had a subpar season in 2007, the Sox rewarded him with a two-year deal. Dye responded with a 34-homer, 96-RBI season even though he faltered in September. But last year, Dye's batting average dipped to a career low .250 and while he was lights-out the first four months, the lights went out in August and September when he hit only .183 with a paltry four homers and 16 RBI. Those final two months sealed the fate of the soon-to-be 36-year-old.

The fate of Bradley is sealed, too. He's gone even if Hendry is unable to prove that a fool is born every minute. As solid a pro as Dye is, as miserable a human being Bradley is. He comported himself here as if the world was out to get him. Come to think of it, he might be right. There's a reason he's played for seven teams in nine years and maybe eight in 10 if Hendry can BS better than some Republicans can. Bradley is the antithesis of Dye. He's loathed by many, including his (former) teammates. Imagine some of them applauding after Hendry told them he was suspending the miscreant for the last 15 days of the season.

Dye also should get applause, only for the opposite reason.

So while both players appear to be gone, we depart with this; good luck to one, good riddance to the other.

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George Ofman, an original member of The Score and a veteran of NPR, has covered more than 3,500 sporting events over the course of his career. Comments welcome.

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Posted on Nov 26, 2021