It has been no secret going into this offseason that the Cincinnati Reds have a large team payroll and are looking to rid themselves of some of the hefty salaries that they have on their hands. Jayson Stark tweeted earlier today that the Reds are willing to trade outfielder Jay Bruce, but it seems a deal will only be done if the Reds are overwhelmed by the offer they receive. Jay Bruce may be the only big name the Reds are willing to move this offseason.
Jay Bruce is as talented a right fielder as you will find. He’s solid defensively, and is typically a good middle of the order bat.
This past season was a dismal one for Bruce, however, as he struggled to stay healthy. Early in the 2014 season, Bruce had knee surgery, and never appeared to be the Jay Bruce that the team and fans were used to. While he did play in 137 games, he posted a lackluster .217 average with 18 home runs and 66 rbi. The 18 home runs were the fewest of any season in his seven-year career thus far. His first two seasons in the league he played less games and still managed to hit more than 20 home runs.
Bruce does have the advantage of having the offseason to recover and get fully healthy heading into the 2015 season, so maybe that is all it will take for Jay Bruce to find better productivity at the plate. Bruce is under team control through 2016 with a salary of $12 million over the next two seasons.