Phillies: 6 relievers Joe Girardi is excited about for 2021
By Matt Rappa
2. Archie Bradley
Other than re-signing catcher J.T. Realmuto and shortstop Didi Gregorius, perhaps the next-best offseason move that president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski pulled off was signing right-handed reliever Archie Bradley to a one-year, $6 million contract.
Bradley, like Sam Coonrod and Jose Alvarado, is another pitcher that throws with power — topping out at 95/96 miles per hour, which excites Phillies skipper Joe Girardi.
The Oklahoma native was drafted in the first round, seventh overall, in the 2011 draft by the Arizona Diamondbacks. He went on to debut in 2015, and since, has combined to go 23-25 with a 3.91 ERA, 1.359 WHIP, and 425-169 strikeouts-to-walks ratio through 255 appearances and 412 innings. Bradley’s best season arguably came in 2020, posting a 2-0 record, 2.95 ERA, and 1.091 WHIP spanning 16 combined appearances between the Diamondbacks and Cincinnati Reds. Also, in 2017, Bradley finished 20th in the National League MVP race, posting a 1.73 ERA and 1.041 WHIP in 63 appearances.
Over the years, the right-hander has recorded 28 saves in 46 opportunities. In 2020, he was successful in six of his seven such attempts. The Phillies are not quick to envisioning him being their everyday closer just yet.
During Bradley’s introductory press conference, Girardi said that when he talked to the reliever for the first time this offseason, he told him that he “just wants to pitch,” and does not care when. “I think he definitely has the ability to close,” the skipper continued. “I think it’ll just iron itself out in spring training … he definitely has the ability to close.”