High risk, high reward, I said that when the Cubs signed Milton Bradley.
I am also not the guy that looks at a small sample size and is so sure that it will continue for a full season.
I also said that I would be fine with the Bradley signing as long as he played 100 regular season games and was healthy for the playoffs. Whether that happens, time will only tell.
One thing I said I would love for sure, is the fire he brings to the club. A team that was so dry and boring last year despite winning 97 games.
This is the same reason I liked the signing of Lou Piniella. The difference is, "Sweet Lou" doesn't seem to have the fire he had in his earlier days.
I have always loved the fire Zambrano has shown. Yet, in 2008, he even lacked that.
IMO, the Cubs needed someone to bring a flame to the clubhouse. Every team needs it, as long as it is not harmful to the clubs chemistry. While many think that Bradley's run in with Jeff Kent means he is a bad teammate, I have never been sold.
Yes, he has played for five cities in as many years. Yet, outside of the incident with Kent, I have not heard/read anything by a manager or teammate that even hints towards him being a bad guy in the clubhouse.
So, while many people will undoubtedly criticize him for being tossed in his first home at bat, I think it was needed to fire up a team that is playing mediocre baseball. Especially for a team that shouldn't be playing mediocre baseball.
I have said it before, the Lou Pinella toss and Zambrano vs. Barret bout of 2007 turned this team around. Since then, we have seen a swing and miss by Derrek Lee (vs. Chris Young) and that is about as much fire as I can remember.
With Fukudome hitting as well as he is now, it is not as important to have Bradley on the field. Reed Johnson is a very capable outfielder and hitter that can sustain production rather than risking the season for Bradley.
Bradley's importance comes in the fall. The team should be able to win the division without him.
Either way, I think he will bring that fire to the dugout whether in the line up or not.
I myself, wouldn't be upset if he got tossed from a game while he is on the disabled list. If that sparks his teammates then I am all for it.
The Cubs needed a fire lit under their ass. They got it when they signed Milton Bradley.