The Diamondbacks are struggling at 4-12 and no starter has an ERA lower than Bronson Arroyo's 4.82. So when the team called up Mike Bolsinger rather than top prospect Archie Bradley, Bradley's agent was not happy.
Jay Franklin, speaking to Fox Sports, said Arizona did not call up the No. 9 prospect overall because the team did not want to start the righthander's arbitration clock.
“I think it’s very apparent what is going on in Arizona,” Franklin told Fox. “Every ballplayer that is playing minor league baseball works his tail off to get an opportunity to play in the big leagues.
“Archie Bradley has proven to the Diamondbacks organization that he has deserved that opportunity by keeping his mouth shut and letting his numbers speak for his chance to pitch in the major leagues.”
General manager Kevin Towers did not agree with Franklin's assessment, saying Bradley just isn't ready for the move.
“I think he needs more time down there as well as I don’t think it’s a proper environment,” Towers told reporters. “With what’s going on with our ball club, throwing him in here, he would be viewed as the savior. I don’t think it’s the right time. If we were playing a little better baseball, maybe. But right now I don’t want to put that on him. That’s not to say he couldn’t come up here and perform like we hope Mike does, but we don’t like the environment based on who he is and what people will think once he comes here.”
Bradley, the seventh overall pick in 2011, is 1-1, 1.50 at Triple-A Reno of the Pacific Coast League, with eight strikeouts in 12 innings. He won't turn 22 until August.
Bradley has the potential to be the frontline starter the Diamondbacks—and any franchise, really—dreams on, with an overpowering fastball at 93-94 with a curveball that rates as a plus pitch.
His walk rate has been an issue, although he was able to trim it to 4.1 per nine innings in 2013.