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Indians put Bradley on DL

Posted: Friday August 15, 2003 2:25 PM

CLEVELAND (AP) -- Milton Bradley was placed on the 15-day disabled list Friday with a bruised lower back, and the Cleveland Indians said their center fielder will be out for at least four weeks.

To take Bradley's spot, outfielder Alex Escobar was recalled from Triple-A Buffalo.

Escobar, once as highly touted New York Mets prospect, will be making his debut with the Indians. He missed all of 2002 after tearing a knee ligament during spring training.

Bradley left an Aug. 9 game against Anaheim complaining of soreness in his back. He returned from the Indians' trip to Minnesota for an MRI which revealed the bruise.

The Indians said Bradley will need four week's rest for the soreness and swelling to subside.

This is the outfielder's second trip to the DL this season. In April, he was sidelined with a strained hamstring. He also had two stints on the DL last season -- for a broken orbital bone in his eye and an appendectomy.

Bradley has been the Indians' best player this season. He's batting .321 -- third in the AL -- with 10 homers and a team-leading 56 RBIs in 101 games.

Bradley's season has also been marked with a few notable confrontations with opponents as well as a heated argument with plate umpire Bruce Froemming last month in Oakland.

Escobar came to the Indians as part of the eight-player deal in 2001 that sent Roberto Alomar to the Mets.

He was expected to play for Cleveland last year but tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee while crashing into the outfield wall while making a catch in Bradenton, Fla.

Escobar was batting .252 with 24 homers and 78 RBIs this season with the Bisons. He led the International League in homers and was second in RBIs.

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