After an unsuccessful 1988 season with the Phillies distinguished only by his league-leading 16 HBP, Bradley returned to the AL and became a key part of the resurgent 1989 Orioles.
The former University of Missouri quarterback began his career with the Mariners. He hit 26 homers for them in 1985 but never hit more than 14 in any subsequent season, and he settled into his role as a hustling leadoff hitter with good extra-base-hit power and base-stealing ability. Despite hitting poorly at the start of most seasons and striking out frequently, Bradley batted at least .297 in each of his four full seasons with Seattle and is the only player to have a .300 batting average for his career as a Mariner.
Complaining about the Mariners, their ballpark, and their fans, Bradley was traded to Philadelphia. At the time of his departure, he held the Mariner season records for batting average, hits, total bases, and on-base percentage, and was tied for season team records for hits, consecutive hits, triples, and runs in a game. He was also the Mariners’ career leader in triples and was second in career stolen bases.
Years after his departure from the game, Bradley expressed regret that he hadn’t give up football earlier. “If you have to choose between two sports, you better choose baseball,” he told Baseball America in 2001. “If you miss a year in baseball and you are a hitter you might never get your stroke back.”