Archie Bradley in the late innings
During spring training, Archie Bradley made something clear; he wanted to pitch in the big leagues every day. He was open to the idea of starting the season as a reliever.
Bradley spoke to the Arizona Republic in late March about this subject.
"“With the way I’m throwing the baseball right now, the way I feel, the way the ball is coming out, I’m comfortable in any role, in any capacity,” Bradley said. “Just put me on this team.”"
The feeling Bradley had during the exhibition translated to his first regular season appearance on Tuesday. With the Diamondbacks trailing 8-2 after Randall Delgado allowed five runs in 0.2 innings of work, Bradley entered the game to chill the fire, and he did that and more.
He provided Arizona much-needed length out of the pen, similar to a certain performance from Josh Collmenter. Bradley struck out seven Giants over 3.1 scoreless innings, with his fastball topping out at 98 mph, the highest velocity ever recorded by the right-hander.
As a starter in spring training, Bradley worked on a changeup, but if he can touch 95 to 98 with his fastball and mix in his nasty curveball, he could settle into a late inning reliever role for the rest of his career, and stay in the majors.
The Diamondbacks bullpen, especially in the back end, is shaky at best and if Bradley wants to remain in the majors, a role as the setup man or closer could provide him job security. The big beard will help too, but he can’t rely on that….