Archie Bradley (baseball)
Bradley with the Arizona Diamondbacks
|Arizona Diamondbacks – No. 25|
|Born: August 10, 1992|
|April 11, 2015, for the Arizona Diamondbacks|
|MLB statistics |
(through September 28, 2018)
|Earned run average||4.04|
After transferring from Muskogee High School to Broken Arrow Senior High School before his junior year, Bradley quickly became the starting quarterback on the school's varsity football team and a starting pitcher for the baseball team. After his junior year, Bradley was named to the 2010 Aflac All-American Baseball Classic roster. In 2011, during his senior season, he led the team to a 36–2 record and its first 6A State Championship since 1991. In the championship game against the Rams of Owasso High School, Bradley struck out 14 batters and allowed just two hits over seven innings in a 4–0 win. He finished his senior season with a 12–1 record, allowing just three earned runs in 711⁄3 innings, walking 11 batters and striking out 133.
Bradley was expected to be drafted in the first round of the 2011 draft. He committed to play both football and baseball at the University of Oklahoma, but due to his high draft status, eventually signed a professional baseball contract after the Arizona Diamondbacks drafted him in the first round (seventh overall) of the 2011 MLB draft. ESPN baseball insider, Keith Law, ranked Bradley as the number nine prospect in the 2011 draft. Archie was selected as the 7th Overall pick in the 2011 MLB Draft to the Arizona Diamondbacks.
On August 15, 2011, with only minutes left until the signing deadline, Bradley signed a contract with the Diamondbacks for $5 million, to be spread out over five years due to his two-sport abilities. Instead of going to college to play both football and baseball, he was sent to Arizona for workouts at the rookie level before being sent to the Arizona League. Prior to the 2012 season, he was ranked as the 25th-best prospect in baseball by Baseball America.
Bradley made his professional debut in 2012 with the South Bend Silver Hawks and spent the whole season there, going 12-6 with a 3.84 ERA in 27 starts. In 2013, he pitched for the Visalia Rawhide and the Mobile BayBears where he compiled a combined 14-5 record and a 1.84 ERA in 26 total starts between both teams, and in 2014, he pitched for both the Reno Aces and Mobile. In five starts for Reno, he was 1-4 with a 5.18 ERA, and in 12 starts for Mobile, he was 2-3 with a 4.12 ERA.
In 2015, Bradley made the Diamondbacks opening day roster. He made the start in his MLB debut on April 11, 2015 against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Bradley pitched 6 shutout innings, giving up 1 hit and 4 walks, and striking out 6. He also got his first major league hit, a single. Bradley defeated 2014 Cy Young Award winner, and 2014 NL MVP, Clayton Kershaw in the 6-0 Diamondbacks win, becoming the fifth rookie pitcher to make his first start against a Cy Young winner since 2003, and the fourth to win the game. On April 16 Bradley opposed 2014 World Series MVP Madison Bumgarner becoming the first pitcher in MLB history to face the defending Cy Young Award Winner and the World Series MVP in his first two starts. He earned a no decision in 6 2/3 innings pitched in a Diamondbacks 7-6 win in 12 innings.
During a game against the Colorado Rockies on April 28, 2015, Bradley was hit in the face by a line drive off the bat of Carlos González, forcing him to leave the game. The following morning, he was placed on the 15-day disabled list with minor damage to his sinus cavity. Bradley began the 2016 season with Reno, and was recalled and optioned between Reno and Arizona multiple times during the season before he was called up for a final time on May 29. In 26 starts for Arizona, he was 8-9 with a 5.02 ERA.
During 2017 spring training, after battling for a spot in the rotation, Bradley lost the competition to Patrick Corbin and would serve as a reliever for the 2017 season in Arizona. Sporting a new thick, wild beard, Bradley flourished in the setup role in 2017. When he was a starting pitcher he refused to grow a beard, but after attending a palm reader she stated that a beard would give him special powers in baseball. Bradley stated "I don't believe in special powers but it's kind of funny that as soon as I grew a beard I seemed to pitch better. I think it's more to do with having to only pitch 1-2 innings and being able to go 100% versus trying to save my arm to last 6-7 innings as a starter. Just in case the palm reader was correct I won't shave my beard until I retire".
On October 4, 2017, in the 2017 National League Wild Card Round, Bradley hit a 2-run RBI triple to left-center field off of Pat Neshek in an 11-8 Diamondbacks win over the Colorado Rockies. Bradley was the first relief pitcher in Major League history to triple in a postseason game, as well as the sixth pitcher overall. He finished the 2017 season, his first as a relief pitcher, with a 3-3 record and a 1.73 ERA in 63 appearances.
The following year, in 2018, Bradley began the season as the setup man. On the season, Bradley finished with an ERA of 3.64 in 76 appearances. He struck out 75 batters in 71 2⁄3 innings. He shared the major league lead in holds, with 34.
Bradley is a 6' 4", 225 lb. right-handed pitcher who features a fastball that sits in the 96-97 mph range, topping out around 100 mph. He also throws a knuckle curveball in the low 80s that he describes having 12–6 movement. He also occasionally throws a changeup.
When Bradley was a starting pitcher he refused to grow a beard. However, he went to a palm reader she stated that a beard would give him special powers in baseball. He decided to grow a beard and in his first season after having a beard he became one of the best relief pitchers in baseball. He stated "I don't believe in special powers but it's kind of funny that as soon as I grew a beard I seemed to pitch better. I think it's more to do with having to only pitch 1-2 innings and being able to go 100% versus trying to save my arm to last 6-7 innings as a starter. Just in case the palm reader was correct I won't shave my beard until I retire". 
- "Muskogee native Archie Bradley shines in All-Stars Futures Game". Associated Press. The Daily Progress. July 15, 2013. Retrieved March 28, 2014.
- "Aflac All-American". Aflac All-American. Retrieved 2011-08-17.
- "BA tops Owasso for state championship". Tulsa World. May 14, 2011. Retrieved 2011-08-17.
- "Bradley's pitching ranks No. 1 in recent state title game history". Tulsa World. 2011-08-13. Retrieved 2011-08-17.
- Kevin King (2011-05-09). "Bradley Signs With OU". KTUL.com. Retrieved 2011-08-17.
- "2011 MLB draft: Keith Law's Top 100 draft prospect rankings". ESPN.com. 2011-05-12. Retrieved 2011-08-17.
- Steve Gilbert (August 16, 2011). "D-backs sign first-round Draft pick Archie Bradley". MLB.com. Retrieved 2011-08-17.
- 2012 Top 100 Prospects
- "Archie Bradley Stats, Highlights, Bio - MiLB.com Stats - The Official Site of Minor League Baseball". MiLB.com. Retrieved June 18, 2018.
- Bradley makes Arizona's opening day roster
- Associated Press (April 12, 2015). "Archie Bradley has dazzling debut for D-backs". ESPN. Retrieved April 12, 2015.
- Buchanan, Zach. "Bradley struck by line drive, leaves game". azcentral.com. Arizona Central. Retrieved April 28, 2015.
- Gilbert, Steve. "Bradley in good spirits after being struck by liner, placed on DL". MLB.com. MLB.com. Retrieved April 29, 2015.
- John Altavilla (2018-06-27). "This No. 2 For D-Backs' Bradley Was Quite the Curveball". Tiebreaker. Retrieved 2018-09-14.
- "Archie Bradley let loose after hitting the first postseason triple by a relief pitcher". MLB. Retrieved October 5, 2017.
- Major League Leaderboards » 2018 » Pitchers » Standard Statistics | FanGraphs Baseball
- Laurila, David (April 3, 2012). "Q&A: Archie Bradley, Future D-Backs Ace". Fangraphs. Retrieved April 3, 2013.
- Belmont, Thomas (March 4, 2012). "Prospect Instinct 2012 – Archie Bradley, RHP Arizona Diamondbacks". Baseball Instinct. Retrieved April 3, 2013.