The Toronto Blue Jays are adding an old American League East rival to their outfield mix, agreeing to terms on a contract with Jackie Bradley Jr., according to multiple reports. Bradley was released by the Boston Red Sox on Aug. 4.
— Ben Nicholson-Smith (@bnicholsonsmith) August 9, 2022
The 32-year-old is having a rough season at the plate, slashing just .210/.257/.321 with three home runs in 91 games. He was an All-Star in 2016 and was named MVP of the ALCS in 2018 en route to Boston's World Series title that year.
The last-place Red Sox opted to move on from Bradley to give more of an opportunity to young outfielder Jarren Duran.
Bradley was a crucial member of the Red Sox during his prime, spending the first eight years of his career in Boston before signing a two-year deal with the Milwaukee Brewers prior to the 2021 campaign. The Red Sox re-acquired him last offseason in exchange for Hunter Renfroe.
Toronto was reportedly linked to Bradley last winter, with The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal reporting the Blue Jays and Brewers discussed a Bradley-Randal Grichuk swap. Grichuk ended up being traded to the Colorado Rockies in the deal that sent Raimel Tapia north of the border.
Bradley gives the Blue Jays another left-handed bat in the outfield, to go along with Tapia and Bradley Zimmer. His speed isn't what it used to be, but Bradley is still a strong defender and baserunner, which gives interim manager John Schneider another option late in games as a defensive replacement or pinch-runner.
The move can also be viewed as additional insurance for centre fielder George Springer, who was placed on the injured list over the weekend due to elbow inflammation. Trade deadline acquisition Whit Merrifield has primarily shouldered the centre-field duties in Springer's absence.
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