Desperate to score runs and willing to take a chance, the Los Angeles Dodgers got troubled outfielder Milton Bradley from the Cleveland Indians in a trade Sunday for a minor leaguer and a player to be named.
The deal capped a tumultuous week for the Indians' cleanup hitter. He was pulled from an exhibition game Wednesday by manager Eric Wedge for failing to run out a pop fly that dropped, barred from training camp the next day and later sent to the minors.
Bradley was expected to start in center field Monday when Los Angeles opened at home against San Diego.
"I think Milton's gotten a bad rap to this point," Dodgers general manager Paul DePodesta said. "I actually talked to him this morning, and he said that this was the best thing he could have possibly hoped for."
Said Indians manager Eric Wedge: "It's disappointing it didn't work out here."
"We feel like we have to handle this thing appropriately, and that's what we're trying to do," he said before an exhibition game against the Phillies.
The Dodgers, whose 574 runs were the fewest in the majors last season, sent outfielder Franklin Gutierrez to Cleveland.
REYES ON DL:Jose Reyes' strained right hamstring will prevent him from starting the season with the New York Mets, who placed the second baseman on the 15-day disabled list. The Mets also purchased the contracts of Shane Spencer, Eric Valent and Scott Erickson from Triple-A Norfolk on Saturday night. Reyes, 20, injured his hamstring March 14 while stealing a base during a spring training game against Minnesota and has not played since.
BONDS' LAWYER ACCUSES GOVERNMENT: Barry Bonds' lawyer believes the federal government is singling out the San Francisco Giants slugger in the Bay area steroids scandal. Michael Rains told the New York Times that the federal government appears intent on trying to set a perjury trap for Bonds.
Bonds' personal trainer, Greg Anderson, was among four men indicted last month on charges of illegally supplying performance-enhancing drugs from the Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative. All four pleaded not guilty.
A'S ADDITION: The Oakland Athletics plan to add veteran utilityman Mark McLemore to boost their ailing infield. The deal likely would be for a major league contract. Second baseman Mark Ellis is expected to be out at least two months with a dislocated right shoulder, and backup infielder Frank Menechino is sidelined with a strained right calf. Both players were placed on the 15-day disabled list Saturday, retroactive to March 26. Also, the A's optioned right-handed starter Rich Harden to Triple-A Sacramento because Oakland doesn't need its fifth starter the first 1 1/2 weeks of the season.
RANGERS TRADE DIAZ: The Texas Rangers traded catcher Einar Diaz to the Montreal Expos, clearing a roster spot for Gerald Laird. Texas also sent minor league pitcher Justin Echols to the Expos for switch-hitting catcher Josh McKinley, Montreal's top draft pick in 1998, and right-hander Chris Young, a Dallas native.