Milton Bradley has left the building

Lou Piniella and Milton Bradley had an ugly confrontration in the clubhouse Friday, and the manager told the Cubs outfielder to leave U.S. Cellular Field before the game ended.

“I told him to take his uniform off,” Piniella said. “He threw his helmet and smashed the water cooler and there was water flying all over. I told him to take his uniform off and go home. I followed him up to the clubhouse and we exchanged some words. I don’t like when those things happen, but I was tired of watching it.”

Bradley had struck out in his first two at-bats, and then flew out to left in the sixth. He threw his helmet and tossed one of the Gatorade coolers. Then, Piniella yelled at him.

Cubs GM Jim Hendry said he would talk to Bradley.

“We’ll have a conversation, that’s for sure, before tomorrow and hopefully we’ll move forward and put some of our troubles behind us,” Hendry said.

Alfonso Soriano said he’d never seen a player and manager fight the way Piniella and Bradley did.

“I hope he comes back and he can help the team to win,” Soriano said of Bradley. “If he’s not that way, we don’t need him. We have 25 players, we have to be on the same page. If he’s not 100 percent to help the team to win, we don’t need him. If he’s 100 percent and he comes and wants to play, he’s more than welcome.”

— Carrie Muskat


Soriano has not got much room to talk. Yesterday the way he walked around second base when he was doubled off on a long fly by Lee, his brilliant micue of a high fly ball today in the 8th inning, and his falure to hit all year.

Lou is losing control of this team. His press conferences are one long and lethargic rag with Lou washing his hands of responsibility and bad-mouthing his players in a passive-aggressive sort of way. How is it that almost EVERYONE on the team is under-performing?

Lou only has one year left. Yes, he’s led the team to two division championships in two years. Yes, he’s done great things for the team. But I say, let him go and bring on Sandberg! Ryne has said repeatedly that he wants to manage the Cubs at Wrigley and would like to end his career within the franchise. Why not consider him for the position once Piniella is gone? And while they’re at it, get rid of Hendry! He needs to be replaced before he does any more harm to the team.

Hendry made some moves in offseason that havent panned out I agree but no reason to fire him people. He has made more great moves to improve the Cubs than not. Lou needs to stay as long as he is effective and still wants in and I dont see Lou not caring and dogging it. Lou and Hendry are hamstrung, Hendry with the sale of team in flux and unable to make anything happen roster wise and Lou had done everything possible to shake up the line up to start the hitting again. I have said that once Lou retires Ryno will be the next Cubs manager. I am sticking with Sweet Lou and Jim Hendry and not jumping ship at the sign of trouble! Cubs are at even .500 for God sakes and still in hunt! Hello people, can still win division or wild card despite recent events. All it takes is a spark to start a fire!

Im done with Bradley. Just release him. No sense in trying to trade him. Let Hoffpauer and eventually Fox take over in right field. Im just simply done with Bradley. Hopefully, Lou is too.

Injuries have played a big part in the Cubs’ poor first half performance, but some of those injuries are suspect. Aramis Ramirez and Reed Johnson obviously hurt themselves going all out on defense, but some of the other players are “calling in sick”,while a little guy making league minimum seems to be playing hurt, and not telling anyone. The one big problem the team has is that some of the more generously salaried players do not hustle. The teams that beat us are the ones who do. We win when we do. Had a player not hustled in today’s game, Soto would not have hit a three run homer, and he may not have even come to the plate. Mike Fontenot can’t seem to buy a hit lately, and when he hit that ground ball with Fox on base, at least he or Fox should have been out,and, perhaps the inning would have ended but Mike pumped his short little legs as fast as he could, and both runners survived. A player cannot always help it if he doesn’t get a hit, or cannot reach the ball on defense, but not trying is indefensible. Players who fail to hustle should be fined, and in proportion to their salary. Piniella and Hendry put together a good team, but some of those huge salaries preceeded them, and they are stuck with overpaid players, who have no incentive to perform. They are stuck defending these players to the media. Maybe if the fine were big enough, management could get their attention.

Who needs that type of attitude not the Cubs…hopefully they will be in a penant race in September and then in the playoffs. Hendry and Lou did the right thing. Set Bradley straight…that better be the last time that he pulls a stunt like that or he is gone. Seems like Bradley doesn’t handle the pressure of everyday baseball compared to just serving as a DH. Bradley better get it together. He did make a real nice catch that prevented a White Sox rally and he needs to focus on continuing to contribute in a positive way. That is how players turn things around focus on all of the positives and work through it. You would think that with his experience as a pro that he would be able to work through the ups and downs of his performance in a more mature manner than that…exchanging words and fighting with the manager c’mon.

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