EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Sports

August 18, 2013

Today's vantage point: Ellsbury will be missed greatly

(Continued)

“Lately I’ve just been able to work counts,” Bradley said.

“I’ve seen a ton of pitches and that’s going to help. I’ve actually been seeing lefties of late pretty well — and just being able to put together some good ABs.”

Like Bradley, Ellsbury has struggled some against lefties, too. He entered Friday batting .249 with a .333 OBP against them while hitting .323 with a .371 OBP against righties.

Bradley said: “When I was going through a little slump or whatever, I was facing a lot more lefties than usual then. But I’m starting to see both pitchers really well. Just tinkering around a little bit.”

Bradley’s numbers dropped as last year progressed, too.

The center fielder batted .315 with a sensational .430 on-base percentage in 2012 during his first full professional season but hit just .229 during the final full month.

Following his struggles last August, Bradley said he felt fatigued and worn down mentally during the final month.

He insists that isn’t the case this year.

“I feel better than ever,” Bradley said.

“I feel as strong as I was at the beginning of the season. And I think it’s just the aspects of just knowing your body and knowing what to expect (this year). I think just learning what you have to go through put me in a good position for this year. I’m not wearing down. I’m doing the things I need to do to keep my body feeling the way it is. I have no complaints at all. No struggling. Nothing dealing with injuries.”

For what it’s worth, Bradley’s overall numbers in Triple-A this year have been better than Ellsbury’s in the majors.

Bradley entered the weekend batting .274 with a .377 OBP, .490 slugging percentage, .868 OPS, nine homers, 29 RBIs, 23 doubles, three triples, 48 runs and six steals in 259 at-bats.

That’s compared to Ellsbury’s .296 average, .357 OBP, .426 slugging percentage, .783 OPS, seven homers, 45 RBIs, 26 doubles, eight triples, 73 runs and 44 steals in 486 at-bats.

Comparing Triple-A and the majors and is like comparing apples and oranges though.

Ellsbury will be missed ... well, from today’s vantage point he will be.

Follow Eagle-Tribune baseball reporter Christopher Smitty on Twitter @SmittyOnMLB.

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