Triple-A Relief Pitcher Of The Week: Las Vegas 51s Chasen Bradford
Here at Legends On Deck we strive on creating features that will bring attention to minor league baseball, by highlighting the hard work and dedication of the ball players, that will one day lead to their dream of playing major league baseball.
During parts of the season, we will profile different position players from the various levels of the minors, and bring attention to which player was most deserving of the player of the week honor.
For this post we will start with the Relief Pitcher of the Week and the honors go to right hander Chasen Bradford, a pitcher for the Mets Triple-A affiliate, Las Vegas 51s.
Bradford, a Las Vegas native, was drafted by the Mets in the 35th round of the 2011 June Amateur draft.
Leading up to the 2016 season, Bradford has climbed through the Mets farm system while experiencing success in each stop along the way.
In 2013 during his time with the Double-A affiliate Binghamton Mets, he posted a 3-1 record, with a 0.71 ERA, 18 strikeouts in 25.1 innings, with opponents batting just .211 against him.
The success continue to follow Bradford in 2014, as he split time between Binghamton and Las Vegas and combined he finished 4-4, with a 2.97 ERA, with 66 strikeouts in 72.2 innings, while also saving 16 games in 20 attempts.
Last year, Bradford remained with the 51s for the whole season, and it was an uncommon year for him as he finished with a career high 4.10 ERA. The Mets then decided to shut him down in mid-August, causing Bradford to miss an opportunity to be brought up to the bigs during the September call-ups.
But this season, Bradford has regained his dominance on the mound, and the evidence is there as he has been untouchable for most of his first nine appearances.
In 12.1 innings of relief with Las Vegas, Bradford is tied for the team lead with two wins, and leads with a 0.73 ERA, and even though Bradford only appeared in two games last week, he has been on a trend where he hasn’t allowed an earned run to score in six straight games dating back to April 12th.
Bradford is proving that hard work and pure dedication for his craft is allowing him to experience early success so far this season. Right now he is not on the 40-man roster, so the Mets would have to clear up a spot in order to promote him to the majors.
This is the season that Bradford should finally reach the big leagues and prove to the fans and Mets brass that he belongs. The decision lies in the hands of the Mets and so far it shows that any struggles Bradford experienced in 2015, has become a learning experience that he used to propel him to a great start to the 2016 season.
There isn’t any doubt that he will be a major league pitcher, but it will determine on when the big club feels he will be ready to make an impact in the bullpen.
The way he is currently pitching, the wait shouldn’t be too long.