MLB GM on whether or not Bradley will find a job: “(Blank) no.”

Seattle Mariners’ batter Milton Bradley reacts after swinging and missing on a pitch from Oakland Athletics starting pitcher Justin Duchscherer during the second inning of their MLB American League Opening Day baseball game in Seattle, Washington, April 12, 2010. REUTERS/Robert Sorbo (UNITED STATES – Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)’s Jon Heyman recently asked four general managers whether or not Milton Bradley (who was released by the Mariners on Monday) would find another job and apparently three of them said no.

The other? According to Heyman via Twitter, the fourth GM said: “(Expletive deleted) no. He was one moody (expletive deleted expletive deleted).”

A simple “no” would have been just fine, but all right…

Even though Bradley currently has a batting line of .218/.313/.356, most observers believe that someone will take a shot on him. But Heyman’s tweets are pretty alarming. It’s not like he talked to the guys who sweep the stadium stands after games for their take on Bradley: He spoke with the people who make decisions on whether or not to sign players.

Granted, Heyman only spoke with four general managers out of the 30 that are currently serving in MLB offices across this fine country. But why would anyone take on this headache when he’s not playing well? There used to be a time when teams were willing to put up with Bradley’s shenanigans because he gave their offense a jolt. But it’s been three years since he hit .321 with the Rangers in 2008 and he hasn’t resembled anything close to a professional hitter since. When you factor in his age (33) and his temperament, I don’t blame any GM for saying “fudge no” when asked whether or not he’ll ever find another job in Major League Baseball.

The Cubs were foolish to give him such an outlandish contract in 2009, but it’s not like he was coming off a bad year (again, he hit .321 with 22 home runs in ’08). And I don’t blame the Mariners for swapping one albatross contract in Carlos Silva for another in Bradley last year.

But I think the end is near: Milton Bradley’s time in Major League Baseball is finally up.

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Should the Mariners and Yankees talk Felix Hernandez?

Aside from Ichiro and Felix Hernandez, there’s not much to see when it comes to the Seattle Mariners. They’re in a real bind because even in a wide-open division, they don’t have enough to compete in the AL West but they also don’t want to trade away their best talent and not have anything to attract fans to the ballpark this season.

But at this point, it might not be a bad idea for GM Jack Zduriencik to get Brian Cashman on the phone.

After missing out on Cliff Lee this winter, the Yankees still need pitching. If A.J. Burnett comes around and Phil Hughes gives the club another quality season, then the Bombers could make do. But this is the Yankees: They don’t want to “make do,” they want to win championships. That’s why they might be willing to sell the farm in order to acquire a piece like King Felix.

Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports talked about this very topic in one of his latest columns. He writes that Zduriencik might be able to acquire farm names such as Jesus Montero (who was the centerpiece of the Yankees’ offer to the Mariners last summer before Seattle sent him to Texas), Manny Banuelos, Dellin Betances, Ivan Nova, Hector Noesi and Eduardo Nunez. As Rosenthal points out, the M’s wouldn’t be able to acquire all of those players, but considering Hernandez is coming off a Cy Young-winning season, is only 25 and is under team control through 2014, there’s not much Zduriencik couldn’t at least ask for.

But again, would the M’s be willing to part with a player such as Hernandez when it’ll make them weaker now and the Yankees stronger? King Felix may wind up spending the next 10 years beating them in New York and then what was this all for? To acquire some prospects that may or may not turn out?

That said, the M’s need a lot of players and New York could certainly help them in that area. If Seattle were able to acquire five great to very good prospects, they might be able to compete for a championship themselves in the near future. Nothing is guaranteed of course, but what if in one phone call Zduriencik could make his club a serious contender in two or three years? All he has to do is sacrifice a lot right now to possibly acquire a lot more down the road.

If you’re Zduriencik, do you make the call?

End of the line for Milton Bradley?

As a member of the Cleveland Indians, he once wore a T-shirt that said “(expletive) Eric Wedge” on it.

As a member of the Chicago Cubs, he was suspended for the final weeks of the 2009 season after he criticized general manager Jim Hendry and manager Lou Piniella.

Most recently, he left the Mariners after being replaced mid-game by then-manager Don Wakamatsu, only to ask for and receive a reinstatement after the club provided anger management training.

Now Milton Bradley is at it again. He was arrested Tuesday morning in California and booked on felony charges for making criminal threats to a woman. Reports state that he was held on $50,000 bail before being released at roughly 5:40PM.

Considering he hit a dismal .205 with just eight home runs and 29 RBIs in 73 games last season, one would assume the M’s brass is pouring over his contract hoping to find a clause that will allow them to release the troubled outfielder. Why not cut ties with Bradley and save $12 million (which is what he’s owed in 2011) in the process?

Of course, that’s easier said than done. Unless Hendry was smart enough to write a clause into Bradley’s contract that would protect the team in the event he were arrested, the Mariners are probably on the hook for that $12 million. If they tried to void his deal, the player’s union would likely file a grievance and it could be months before Bradley sees the inside of a courtroom. During that time, he would be out on bail and he could claim that he’s not being convicted of anything (and therefore, could be “working” during that time).

There’s a good chance that the Mariners will cut him anyway, even if they have to fork over the $12 million that’s still owed on his contract. That would be a grave injustice if he is guilty of a crime (remember, he hasn’t been convicted of anything yet), but at least Seattle would be rid of him. This guy is a ticking time bomb and it’s not a matter of “if” but “when” he’s going to explode again.

But maybe this time there won’t be another club ready to assume the risk.

Ichiro becomes first player with 10 straight 200-hit seasons

Seattle Mariners fans hold up signs for Mariners' Ichiro Suzuki as he trots out to right field in their MLB American League baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays in Toronto September 23, 2010. REUTERS/Fred Thornhill (CANADA - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

In what can only be described as a horrific year for the Seattle Mariners, at least Ichiro Suzuki gave them something to celebrate on Thursday…albeit in another loss.

Ichiro became the first player with 10 straight 200-hit seasons in a 1-0 loss to the Blue Jays today. He reached the milestone with a single (how fitting) to center in the fifth inning off Shawn Hill, which was the first pitch he saw in the at bat.

Ichiro now has more 200-hit seasons than any player in American League history, which breaks the record he shared with the Tigers’ Ty Cobb. Pete “Tha Gambla” Rose is the only other player to record 200 hits in 10 seasons.

Baseball fans will always love the long ball, but it’s easy to appreciate what Ichiro has done over the years when you look at his numbers. He’s led the majors in hits in each of the past four seasons and has done so a total of six times in his 10-year career. He’s been the model of consistency since he came over from Japan and his stats don’t waver too much from year to year.

Too bad the M’s can’t field a better lineup behind him so all of those singles stop going to waste.

Mikey’s MLB power rankings

With football season upon us, that’s when baseball gets real interesting. To me, there is no better time of year than that first weekend in October when you have four MLB playoff series and a full slate of NFL games. As for the pennant races, they’re starting to shift and some teams are beginning to pull away while others lose hold on their position…

1. New York Yankees (75-47)—A one-game lead but the Mariners are in town this weekend, so it’s as good a time as any to start padding the margin over the Rays and Sox again.

2. Tampa Bay Rays (74-48)—Still hanging on, as the Yankees continue to look in their collective rear-view mirror.

3. San Diego Padres (73-48)—The Giants had their five-game winning streak, and the Padres answered with one of their own, widening their late August lead to 6 games over the G-men until losing last night. Is there any question about manager of the year here?

4. Atlanta Braves (72-50)—Bobby Cox hopes his team will feast on Cubs’ pitching at Wrigley while the Phils face the Nats at home.

5. Texas Rangers (68-53)—The Rangers lost four in a row this past week but still have a seven-game lead over the A’s and Angels. I’d say they have nothing to worry about.

6. Minnesota Twins (71-51)—As we suspected, the Twins keep adding to their lead, now 4.5 games over the White Sox.

7. Cincinnati Red (71-51)—Just when the Cardinals made a statement, the Reds have now won 7 in a row while St. Louis has lost 5 straight, giving Dusty Baker’s boys a 4.5 game lead and increasing the chances Brandon Phillips will start smack-talking again, if he hasn’t already.

8. Boston Red Sox (69-54)—Time is running out on the Sox, and also on Roger Clemens’ days as a free man.

9. Philadelphia Phillies (69-52)—They’ve stayed hot, but so have the Braves. Do you think the Phils wish they still had Cliff Lee?

10. San Francisco Giants (69-54)—Only trailing Philly in the wild card chase by one game, two in the loss column. But a recent slide took them out of that spot and their hopes of a division crown are fading away.

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