With a blog named Bad Wax, it’s seems right to blog about the release of Milton Bradley and Ryan Langerhans from the Seattle Mariners. For both, this might be the last stop in the majors. Just hearing that, card collectors should breathe a sign of relief knowing these two will never infect a new card set with their signature or game used items.
First let’s break down Milton Bradley’s career, oh wait, let’s just hand him a bat and let him break things down. Bradley’s temper has followed him everywhere he has went. He is someone who makes Joey errrr…. Albert Belle look like a boy scout. Here was someone who although was never going to be a 40-40 guy, had all the tools needed to become a 20-20 guy in the mold of say a Mike Cameron.
He was a 2nd round draft pick in 1996, selected after Jacque Jones and before Jimmy Rollins. I’m not going to say it was a bad pick given this was the draft where the top talents were Kris Benson, Travis Lee and Brandon Looper. I am going to say that the guy had character issues from day one. There is no doubt in my mind the guy had talent and lord knows enough teams gave him a chance to shine (Montreal/Washington, Cleveland, LA, Oakland, San Diego, Texas, Chicago and Seattle), but when you are pissing off your coach teammates and the GM, your playing time gets limited.
This year he was batting 0.218/2/13 with 4 stolen bases through 28 games. Clearly not starting material anymore. The Mariners, like many other teams, grew tired of his antics and even though he is slated to earn $13 million this season, the M’s decided he wasn’t worth the trouble. His cards are likely to be found lining birdcages, and inserted in spokes, or you could fold it in half and put it on your head and it could be a hat. In short, his cards have never been worth anything and fit the moniker Bad Wax to a tee.
As for Ryan Langerhans, the guy with the wierd last name keeps popping up all over the major league map. First with Atlanta, then Oakland, Washington, and Seattle. He was supposed to be the next great Atlanta outfielder but just never could get the hang of major league pitching. Although not as talented as Milton Bradley, he stuck around in the majors a lot longer than he should have. He finishes (if this is his last stop) with a lifetime statline of 0.226/33/135. That wouldn’t be too bad if it was one season, but that is over the course of 9 seasons.
His cards are usually found in trash bins, gutters, and on the floor at most card shows. His cards maxed out price wise during his rookie season and never came close to those numbers again.
I offer condolences to those who kept these two player’s cards thinking at some point they would be valuable. Instead raise your 40 of Old English and lets toast two vagabonds who can walk away from the game and the hobby, and not plague collectors with their worthless cards anymore!