Saturday, August 20, 2005
Bradley: 'I'm always OK. As long as I'm black, I'm fine'
MIAMI -- Dissension in the Los Angeles Dodgers' clubhouse sent center fielder Milton Bradley to the manager's office following Saturday's victory at Florida.
Bradley said he requested the private, 25-minute meeting with manager Jim Tracy, apparently to discuss discord with a teammate.
"I want people to say Milton Bradley was a pretty good ballplayer and a pretty good person," Bradley said. "Anybody who is going to stand between me getting there, then they need to be eliminated."
Bradley and Tracy declined to provide specifics.
"It's internal," Tracy said. "I had a chat. It has nothing to do with anything he did, right or wrong."
Roy Smith, vice president for scouting and player development, sat in on part of the meeting.
Bradley, who acknowledged he hasn't always done things "the right way," said he had no issues with Tracy and has gotten along well with the manager since joining the Dodgers last year.
"That's my pops," Bradley said, tears welling in his eyes. "From Day 1 he has treated me with respect. I know if I go 0-for-5, he'll still put his arm around me."
Bradley said he has improved his attitude and behavior in recent seasons and now deserves respect.
"Some people, that's all their life is -- is baseball ... how many hits they get, how many runs they drive in, how many plays they make," Bradley said. "They're working for a plaque. I'm not working for a plaque. I'm working to put food on my table."
When asked by a reporter if he was OK, Bradley replied, "I'm always OK. As long as I'm black, I'm fine."
Bradley went 1-for-4 in the Dodgers' 11-6 victory.