As Red Sox center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. has pursued various things in his life, including his baseball career, the one constant source of encouragement throughout all the ups and downs has been his mother, Alfreda.
With Mother's Day on Sunday, Bradley took a minute to reflect on what his mother has meant to him through the years.
• Shop for mom
"My mother is a strong, independent woman who raised her kids to always continue to just get better in their daily lives. She has very strong faith and she just made sure you're thankful for every single day because things could be a lot worse," said Bradley. "She always put a lot of perspective into life and I'm very appreciative of her and the things she's been through and the sacrifices she's made in order to make us better people, and for us to just be able to thrive at whatever we do.
"She encouraged me with baseball, but she encouraged me with everything. Anything that you pretty much put your mind to or desired, she wanted to support you and help you along the way and make sure you stayed on track."
Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.