The Milwaukee Brewers believe they have room for more than one Gold Glove center fielder in their outfield.

Milwaukee finalized the $24 million, two-year contract with Jackie Bradley Jr., whose deal allows him to opt out after this season to become a free agent again.

Bradley, who turns 31 on April 19, joins an outfield that already includes 2019 Gold Glove center fielder Lorenzo Cain, 2018 NL MVP Christian Yelich and Avisail Garcia, giving the Brewers four experienced starters for three outfield spots. Bradley won an AL Gold Glove with Boston in 2018 and was a finalist for the award in 2014, 2016 and 2019.

“I think we’ve just got a lot of great players here,” Bradley said Monday from the Brewers’ spring training camp in Phoenix. “I’m excited to be in the mix. The opportunity’s going to present itself. I don’t have to worry about making the lineup. I’m here to help the team win, and that’s my main focus.”

The Brewers’ need for outfield depth has become more apparent the last few days.

Cain is dealing with a quadriceps issue that has slowed his progress this spring training, potentially complicating his status for the start of the season. Cain had opted out of the 2020 season after playing just five games.

“I’ll do everything possible to get ready,” Cain said. “I plan on being on the field Opening Day.”

Cain, who turns 35 on April 13, called Bradley an “unbelievable defensive player who can swing the bat” and a welcome addition to the team. Cain didn’t express any concern that the addition of Bradley could affect his own job security.

“It’s not a challenge to me,” Cain said. “I feel like I’ve shown what I can do, day in and day out, year in and year out, what I can do as far as center field. If what I’ve done in the past is not enough, then what can I say?”

Brewers president of baseball operations David Stearns said there should be plenty of at bats for all four outfielders, even if everyone stays healthy.

“If we look at three outfield positions, conservatively there are 2,100 plate appearances,” Stearns said. “That’s a lot of playing time. That’s a lot of plate appearances. We want as good of players as possible to consume all of those. So now to hopefully be able to have four really, really good players consuming those 2,100 plate appearances, that puts us in a really good spot.”

Stearns noted that Cain had some wisdom teeth removed before the start of camp that had shut him down for a week to 10 days. Cain said he later hurt his quadriceps while running the bases.

Brewers Manager Craig Counsell said Cain wasn’t on the field last week and added that “he’s going to be slowed by this and we’re at a point where the schedule starts to get a little tight, but I think we still have time to be ready for the season.”

“Look, this is part of what can be expected when you have a player who relies a great deal his lower body, who wasn’t in a competitive environment for a long time, so we knew we needed the spring and the entirety of the spring to get him going,” Stearns said. “Unfortunately we’ve lost a chunk of that at this point. We’ll see how the next couple of weeks go.”

Cain remains optimistic about his chances of being ready for the April 1 opener.

“As far as getting on the field and seeing live pitching, that’s the only setback I see,” Cain said. “I think I’ll get caught up to speed real quick. I’m doing everything possible to get back on this field as soon as possible. I think I’ll be ready to go.”

If Cain is ready for the start of the season, the Brewers could face some interesting decisions as they try to divide playing time among these four experienced outfielders.

“It’s not something I have to worry about,” Bradley said. “I’ll leave that up to Craig and the people who are running the show. I’m going to be focused on helping the team any way I possibly can, and wherever I’m playing, let’s go.”

Milwaukee opened a roster spot by placing utilityman Tim Lopes on the 60-day injured list. Counsell said Lopes injured an oblique while swinging a bat in an exhibition game last week.

CUBS:  Manager David Ross said reliever Pedro Strop has not tested positive for COVID-19 and could be back in camp either Tuesday or Wednesday.

Strop was isolated from camp in Mesa, Arizona, Sunday after violating MLB’s COVID-19 protocols, reportedly for dining indoors with players from the Cleveland Indians.

A joint committee of representatives from MLB and the players union have the discretion of forcing players to quarantine for violations, depending on testing and a player’s intent.

Ross planned to speak with the team about the need to stay diligent regarding the protocols. He said an apology from Strop to his teammates for ignoring the protocols is unnecessary.

“I don’t think Pedro has to apologize to the team,” he said. “He hasn’t done anything to the team. if anything he’s only affected himself. The reminder here for me is talking about staying diligent and it’s easy to let down our guard. it’s a good reminder for us all to continue to follow the protocols. Things are moving in the right direction, let’s not speed things up.”

ASTROS: Right-hander Jake Odorizzi and the Houston Astros finalized a $20.25 million, two-year contract that includes a player option for 2023 and could be worth at least $33.25 million over three seasons.

Odorizzi enhances a Houston rotation that lost Framber Valdez indefinitely to a broken finger this spring. Astros ace Justin Verlander also is sidelined while recovering from Tommy John surgery.

An All-Star with Minnesota in 2019, Odorizzi was limited to four starts last season because of injuries. He was 0-1 with a 6.59 ERA for the Twins during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season.

Odorizzi, who turns 31 this month, gets a $6 million signing bonus payable in equal installments each July from 2021-23, a $6 million salary this season and a $5 million salary in 2022.

The deal includes a $6.5 million player option for 2023 with a $3.25 million buyout, and the 2023 option price would escalate by $2 million each and the buyout by $1 million apiece for 20, 25 and 30 points. He would get one point for each start as a pitcher or pitching appearance of 12 or more outs during 2021 and 2022.

He can earn $6.75 million in performance bonuses for innings in 2022: $500,000 for 100, $1 million each for 110, 120, 130, 140 and 150 and $1.25 million for 160.

If he exercises the option for 2023, he could earn $3 million in performance bonuses for innings that year: $500,000 each for 120 and 130, and $1 million apiece for 140 and 150.

OBIT: Rheal Cormier, the durable left-hander who spent 16 seasons in the majors and remarkably pitched in the Olympics before and after his time in the big leagues, died Monday. He was 53.

The Philadelphia Phillies said Cormier died of cancer at his home in New Brunswick, Canada.

Cormier owned a neat nook in Phillies history: He was the winning pitcher in the final game that Philadelphia won at Veterans Stadium in 2003, and also was the winner in the first game the Phils won after moving into Citizens Bank Park in 2004.

Overall, he was 71-64 with two saves and a 4.03 ERA with St. Louis, Boston, Montreal, Philadelphia and Cincinnati. A member of the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame, Cormier pitched 683 games – among his countrymen, only Paul Quantrill (841) pitched more in the majors.

Cormier made other prominent appearances on the mound, too.

Three years before his big league debut, he pitched for Canada in the 1988 Seoul Olympics. Then in 2008, a year after his final game in the majors, he again threw for Canada in the 2008 Beijing Games – he tuned up for the event by tossing in a men’s senior league.

“Rheal was one of the most vibrant people I’ve had the pleasure of knowing,” former teammate and Hall of Famer Jim Thome said in a statement released by the Phillies. “He loved baseball, but he always put his family first.”

Cormier went 8-0 with a 1.70 ERA in 65 games for the Phillies in 2003. That was the final season in the majors for another Philadelphia lefty, longtime reliever Dan Plesac.

“One of my all time favorite teammates. Big heart, spent 2yrs sitting next to him in the (at)Phillies bullpen,” Plesac tweeted. “he made everyone he played with better…keep throwing that 3-2 splitter in heaven.”

In 2004, Cormier got into 84 games, a Phillies record for a left-handed pitcher.

Cormier debuted with the Cardinals in 1991 and was a starter early in his career. He pitched his only shutout in 1996 for the Expos, a three-hitter against St. Louis.

A lefty specialist in his later years, he finished with six games for Cincinnati in 2007, making his last appearance in the majors five days before his 40th birthday.

The Phillies said Cormier became a U.S. citizen on Sept. 22, 2004, during a Philadelphia-Marlins series in Miami.

“I’m living the American dream and feel like I can give back, help the community and be a part of this country,” he said shortly before the ceremony.

The Phillies said Cormier was active with Phillies Charities Inc. during his six years with the club and was involved with teenage antidrug and suicide prevention programs in Canada.

Cormier is survived by his wife, Lucienne, son Justin and daughter Morgan.

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