- Joe McDonald, Reporter, ESPNBoston.com
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BOSTON -- If Jackie Bradley Jr. had it his way, no one in the big leagues would have the scouting report on his arm strength.
It's becoming difficult for the Red Sox center fielder to fly under the radar in that category.
Bradley made two impressive throws from center during Boston's 2-1 win over the Kansas City Royals on Saturday night at Fenway Park.
In the top of the first inning, Bradley doubled up Jarrod Dyson at first base. Dyson drew a four-pitch walk to lead off the game, before teammate Omar Infante lined a shot to center field. Dyson took off for second and was on the bag when Bradley made the catch. The runner attempted to return to first, but Bradley unleashed a frozen rope to first baseman Mike Napoli to complete the double play.
"He had already made it all the way to second, so it was one of those plays I had so much time I didn't want to make too soft of a throw, so I tried to one-hop it to him, and it was right on the money," Bradley said.
It was the sixth double play Bradley was involved in this season. Entering Saturday's game, no other outfielder in the majors had more than three. And it was his 11th assist of the season, which ranks second only to Oakland Athletics outfielder Yoenis Cespedes.
In the third inning, Dyson led off with a triple. With the game scoreless, Infante lifted a high fly ball to center. Bradley positioned himself perfectly for the catch and made a strong throw to the plate as Dyson tagged from third. Red Sox catcher Christian Vazquez received the throw, but his attempted swipe tag wasn't enough to nail Dyson, who scored to give Kansas City a 1-0 lead.
"I knew right off the bat -- I mean, he's a pretty fast guy, and I got behind it like I wanted to and I just tried to make an accurate throw. I didn't want to overthrow," Bradley said. "I was coming in and I was going to let my momentum carry the ball, but the guy's fast, man. Gosh, he's really fast."
Bradley admitted he didn't get completely behind the throw because he wanted to make sure it was accurate.
"It's one of those plays when you feel like you have him," Bradley said. "I felt like right off the bat they were obviously going to attempt it, and I felt like I had him. I made a good throw and [Vazquez] made a great pick, but [Dyson] was able to sneak right on in there."
Red Sox manager John Farrell thought Bradley's throw was going to save a run.
"I don't know if he gets the recognition or not, but we've seen it many times where he's got a strong, accurate arm," Farrell said. "If the ball was probably another foot to the left on throwing Dyson out at home plate. He's got a lot of confidence in it, and, more than anything, the accuracy has improved as the year's gone along."
BOSTON -- If Jackie Bradley Jr. had it his way, no one in the big leagues would have the scouting report on his arm strength.It's becoming difficult for the Red Sox center fielder to fly under the radar in that category.