Tag Archives: Jay Bruce

A Cubbies-Redlegs Summer Matinee

Today I went with three friends to see the Reds host the Cubbies on a getaway day. The Cubs won this game 9-2. The seats and weather were great, and we saw a bunch of cool stuff. It was the first time I’ve made it to a game this season, and I just got a new camera.

Click through the jump to see too many photos from today.

Continue reading A Cubbies-Redlegs Summer Matinee

Jay Bruce destroys Colby Lewis, continues tear

Man, who is this guy?

This guy who looks like the 23-year old kid again with power to all fields, with 16 homers and 55 RBI. This .282 average, .921 OPS bat?

Reds win 8-2 in Arlington in a game that Colby Lewis was supposed to handle their lineup easily, in a game where the Rangers and people around baseball were chalking this up to be a ‘gimme’.

I can’t believe now that Bruce is in the midst of a career year and probably the best offensive player on the roster; that the Reds are going to just move him. Say it ain’t so!

Jay Bruce is still as good once as he ever was

Ah man, we still love this guy. Old favorites die hard. This was definitely one of Jay Bruce’s longest home runs at Great American Ball Park. He slugged number 14, and drove in runs 43 and 44; in the Reds 2-1 win on Saturday afternoon in Cincinnati.

He’s arguably been the Reds best offensive player. With an OPS over .900, we kind of hope as his swan song in Cincinnati (if they’re not going to keep him as part of the ‘next’ core) that they do him the honor of letting him be the Reds only All Star.

He’s definitely looking like the player he always should have been offensively, even if advanced metrics tell us he’s somehow worth less than an empty trash bucket in right field. I actually saw with my own two eyes – Bruce made a nice defensive play in right field Saturday afternoon. So WAR and it’s defensive judgements can just suck it on this one.

Jay Bruce gets a milestone at Great American Ballpark

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With two home runs tonight, Jay Bruce hit career dingers 127 and 128 at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati, becoming the all-time leader; passing Adam Dunn. We’ve said it many times; Bruce has had an enigmatic career with flashes of brilliance. At the end of the day, it’s hard not to realize he’s accomplished quite a bit in a Reds uniform.

It looked at that point like it would be a happy ending for one night in the Queen City; but Tony Cingrani and the Reds pen full of shitheads had other ideas. The Reds would go on to lose this ballgame 8-7 in 12 innings on a Francisco Lindor home run. Lindor is really a helluva a little ballplayer.

You can see Lindor’s game-winning home run off Keyvius friggin’ Sampson by clicking here. That ball had some giddeup on it.

The Reds try to get swept tomorrow in the Battle of Ohio Series. It won’t be easy, as Corey Kluber gets the start and he’s Jekyll and Hyde awful, but I think the Reds have it in them.

The Reds; and Jay Bruce are sucking me in again

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[Box Score]
[Cincinnati.com]

The Reds have done this all before. They did this before it was too late; before the roster was pared down to the state it’s in now. This year’s 3-0 start after a 10-6 win to complete a sweep of the hapless Philadelphia Phillies today in the Businessman’s Special down at Great American feels so much like one year ago.

Except for one thing, you know these guys you love are on borrowed time. None more than Jay Bruce – and how unlikely was it at some points that we would ever do a post again about him having a multi-homer game in a Reds uniform? Bruce had a monster game today, rebounding from an error in right field that could have been a blemish on the day; Robert Stephenson’s big league debut as a starter.

His first home run was the type your friends text you about. It was an absolute monster shot off the M&M’s sign in right field that would have landed in the river in all likelihood if not for the sign. He would later add a single, and another homer to center for good measure to finish with five RBI on the day.

And although it’s bittersweet; although you know that the Reds front office would never allow them to compete even if this fairy tale start continues beyond the Phillies, there’s just something really nice about all this. To be able to enjoy it for a few days; to see guys like Bruce being the elder statesman for the Redlegs; it’s kind of odd and neat all in the same. As we get older – so do the rosters of our favorite teams. Nothing can last forever and there’s no telling how long something in baseball will last. You just enjoy the moment and file it away and remember on a given day that it made your day.

The Cincinnati Reds are going to Trade Jay Bruce

If there was any doubt, because the Reds organization had been saying all along that they won’t move Bruce until the return is right; the word and truth is out that they’re going to move him for pennies on the dollar. They’re looking to simply slash payroll, like the owner said they wouldn’t under his tenure. Not that this should come as a surprise. First it was Chapman, then Todd Frazier; then they tried to move Brandon Phillips, now the final blow to the fan base. They’re absolutely going to trade the guy who hit the biggest home run in many Reds fans lives back in 2010.

So while Jay Bruce tells reporters it’s not going to be a distraction, while Bryan Price sheepishly says he won’t speculate on who will play right field in the even of a trade (and then he goes on to talk about how Duvall, Rodriguez, and Scott friggin’ Schebler have all played right field), it’s a foregone conclusion of what is going to happen.

The deal reported to be almost done only fell through because of Michael Saunders’ poor medicals.

I’m so disgusted with this franchise. It’s not that Bruce is a particularly great player anymore. No one who has watched him the past few seasons would argue that. But there was simply no reason to deal Chapman, Frazier, and now Bruce for poor returns in succession in the manner they have and will. Bruce will be gone by opening day. They could have allowed the fans a little more hope and kept them together until the All Star Break. They could have delayed it longer and just rebuilt around their core.

Instead, we’re going to see them enter a purgatory like 2003 to 2009. That’s unacceptable. There are organizations out there who avoid it.

I’ve already made the decision I’m not going to spend my money to see the Reds play. If an opponent is in town who I want to watch, I’ll buy a ticket. I’m not spending the money to see Adam Duvall and a bunch of young pitchers who won’t be around the next time the Reds are decent.

The Reds have operated like a true losing organization for the past half year. I’m fed up with it. We’ll have a longer post to come when Bruce is actually dealt.

Has Jay Bruce played his last game as a Red?

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Jay Bruce finished his 2015 season with 26 home runs, 87 RBI, a .226 average, and a .729 OPS. He was essentially a replacement-level player with an 0.1 WAR.

Reds fans are clamoring; actually begging, to trade him for a bucket of balls and move on. I have a feeling the Reds will oblige.

I am not sure what happened here. In all of my years following the game of baseball, there’s never been a more enigmatic player I’ve like and followed than Jay Bruce. It’s been said many times on this page. When he was good and on a hot streak, there was often no one better in baseball. But he didn’t have many of those hot streaks in 2014 or 2015 that pulled you in and made you believe. In about 1200 plate appearances over the last two seasons, he was a .222 hitter with a .695 OPS.

We just can’t defend it. It makes no sense when you look at the player that once was. And although Bruce never reached his peak that some (including us) expected, Bruce hit 208 home runs in a Reds uniform (and a couple in the postseason) and had a .780 lifetime OPS with at times, a gold glove caliber defense in right field.

He was a good guy in the clubhouse, and a remarkably solid guy off the field. He was durable, and fun to watch. If indeed the sun has set on our favorite Reds’ career, it’s been a good run even if it never quite worked out how we figured.

We just wish we knew what took place for things to get so corrupted here towards the tail end.

Jay Bruce hits milestone home run #200

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Amid the trade rumors, and the slumps, and the hot streaks; Jay Bruce is carved in Cincinnati baseball history books now with an elite number next to his name. He’s ninth all-time on the Reds career home runs list, and last night off of Adam Kennedy he lined a line drive out of Petco Park to reach the feat. It was not a majestic tape measure blast; although he did hit the piss out of it.

The home run of course snapped one of those typical 1 for 21 Jay Bruce disappearance act slumps. If he could just eliminate those he would be a star. He would probably have the contract Joey Votto has and go on to continue to climb the all-time list. He’ll soon pass Eric Davis (203) and Ken Griffey Jr. (210) if he can get hot. There’s a good chance Bruce is dealt this offseason for no good reason other than the Reds want to trim payroll and ‘want more consistent production’ out of their right fielder.

It was the only game that the Reds scored in a 2-1 loss. Against Adam Friggin’ Kennedy. This has really been a tough year, I can’t say it enough. There has been little to no magic after that abbreviated hot start that saw them jump out to 4-0.

Last night I gave pause and thanks that Jay Bruce somewhat etched his name in stone as one of the best Reds ever; in the same way I feel that Adam Dunn was one of the best Reds ever. Of all the players who have crossed the white lines and worn the Reds uniform, the guy has hit more home runs than most of them. That’s to be commended.

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Jay Bruce survives the deadline

I woke up to tweets like this:

And around dinner, kind of like back when rapture was supposed to happen; the deadline passed and we caught this:

What a day of roller coaster emotions. I thought this was going down, then I thought it wasn’t. Then it looked like it was. I think we’ll come to find out the Reds came very close and their owner blocked a trade of Bruce.

He was after all, the guy who gave us this:

I’m very thankful for whatever amount of time I have left to watch Bruce as a Red. His last couple months; let’s call it six weeks or so, have been six of the better weeks of his Reds career.

One More for the Core

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If the Reds are torn apart sometime in the next 48 hours with key members of this core from the playoff run stripped from the roster and fan base, then let it be written that the Redlegs went into the sea of red that is St. Louis and shut out the best team in baseball for the second night in a row, winning 1-0.

Jay Bruce hit his 17th home run of the season off a very good John Lackey, and Aroldis Chapman locked down his 21st save of the season.

It was so baseball. These guys going out and in the midst of all kinds of rumors that have them shipped all over teh globe; they go out and play a sound game to beat a much more sound team.

Anthony DeSclafani threw seven shutout innings and improved to 6-7 on the year. The Reds collected just two hits.

And maybe; just maybe, this is the type of win that tells ownership it’s not time to let the sun set on this group yet. Maybe they look towards next year and aggressively decide that by adding a key arm or two to the rotation, they’ll have the lineup to attempt to make a run at things.

But if not – if they do decide to sell off these guys who were being rumored in deals before the game started tonight – it was perhaps one last signature win to remember them by. It’s the kind you don’t forget.

Jay Bruce’s last (Cincinnati) ride?

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Every time Jay Bruce homers, I wonder if it’s the last time I’ll see him round the bases in a Cincinnati Reds uniform. Tonight in Cincinnati, he hit a monstrous clout to right center for his 15th home run of the season. It allowed the Reds to beat the Cubs 5-4. Bruce also doubled and is now hitting .255 on the season.

I really hope that the sun hasn’t set on Bruce’s Reds career. There’s no doubting he is an enigmatic player. But Bruce is in one of the best stretches of his career. Since May 16th he’s hitting over .310 with an OPS well north of .900 and a slugging percentage over .550, all hallmarks of a quality middle of the order hitter.

In a perfect world, Bruce continues to progress and the Reds don’t get quite the offer they hope to by broadcasting to the baseball world that he can be had. They work out a reasonable extension for him to remain part of the solution in Cincinnati – players like Bruce could make the ‘rebuild’ just a bit shorter. Plus, I still want a reason to go to the park. Bruce is at the core of the guys I have a personal attachment to. He has 197 career regular season homers as a Reds player. If you get an offer that brings a top tier prospect, make the deal. If not – you don’t trade a productive player like Bruce just to trade him.

I am a bit puzzled at why the Reds have made Bruce so willingly available but a guy like Todd Frazier whom is under team control similarly until 2017 is not available. You can’t have it both ways. Both should fit the profile of a guy who can be moved, or neither. The Reds have no viable replacement for Bruce being roadblocked in the minor leagues, so I just don’t see a reason to up and move him.

That said, the things are falling into place as I thought they would. The perfect storm for Bruce to be moved. The Reds aren’t very good, the All Star Game is completed, and Bruce is playing pretty well. This is kind of what I saw coming down the pipeline back in March. I think we’re seeing Jay Bruce’s final days as a Red, and it kind of sucks.

It’s kind of shitty being the fan of a small market team. There are teams in the game who have the ability to keep a homegrown talent if they so choose. It seems like the Reds are following some unwritten rule, almost conforming to think because it’s time to rebuild, you move a multiple season All-Star corner outfielder just to get something done. And for the fans, it does suck. We’ll see how this plays out, and eulogize his career in Cincinnati properly should we have to in the near future.

The Reds shut out the Marlins on an overcast Friday Night

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[Reds 5, Marlins 0]

It didn’t look like a paid attendance of 33,379 on a decent but cloud-covered night in the Queen City when you looked up in the stands. But those who turned out to see the Reds take on the Marlins in this mid-June contest got what they wanted, a Reds win. The Reds are now 2-0 this season when we attend the game.

I took my wife, sister, and dad to the game. When my dad and I were walking down to our seats the PA announcer came over the loud speaker and asked for a moment of silence in honor of fallen Cincinnati Police Officer Sonny Kim. The announcer said Kim had been killed in the line of duty earlier in the morning, marking the first police officer killed in the line of duty since 2000. Very sad story and solemn start to the night.

It was a great night though, the weather held up and my family had a great time. My dad said it was the best seats he had ever had and a perfect start to Father’s Day weekend. If this is the last game I get to attend with my dad, we had a great time.

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I banked so heavily on Christian Yelich having a big year for me in fantasy baseball, and he’s hitting .233 on June 19th’s ending. He went 1 for 4, and was rang up looking to end the first inning just after this picture was taken.

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Proud to say I got to see Giancarlo Stanton play during this legendary season he’s having. He went 0 for 4 though.

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The fastest man in the big leagues aside from Billy Hamilton, Dee Gordon. He’s hitting .355 and leading the National League in hitting in stark contrast to Yelich.

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Mike Leake was real good last night. He had a no-hitter into the 6th inning when Derek Dietrich singled to break it up through the left side. Leake went seven innings, allowed only two hits, walked three and struck out seven. Leake improved to 4-4 on the year.

Jay Bruce had a big double to put the game on ice late.  Marlon Byrd had a big home run to get the Reds on the board early. Todd Frazier made an insane stop at third base.

All in all, really good night at the ballpark. The Reds sit at 31-35, and hopes have not completely faded yet of them getting to .500 on the season.

The Best Reds win of 2015

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[Reds 8, Tigers 4 (13 innings)]

It’s been such a frustrating season. But last night, the Reds had the magic going. As I watched them and the innings wore on and they squandered opportunities with bang-bang plays at the plate to win the game; I knew in my heart they were going to win the game.

It ended with a Todd Frazier walk-off Grand Slam in the bottom of the 13th off Joakim Soria. It was Jay Bruce’s first five-hit game of his career.

They overcame two big home runs from Miguel Cabrera and Tyler Collins that looked like the dagger.

The Reds got three scoreless innings from some guy named Donovan Hand – a guy who hasn’t thrown in the big leagues in a number of years. And look at the names the Reds are running out of the pen out of nowhere: Hand, Carlos Contreras, Ryan Mattheus, Burke Badenhop. It’s not like these are guys who have came up through the Reds system. If you think back to when the Reds were a good team, they had the same bullpen arms the whole year pretty much. They had dependable guys and you knew the names and there were several guys who had came up through the system together. That has faded away.

But on this night the Reds were just meant to win. Frazier hits home runs 21 and 22, including a dramatic blast that won them the game.

After the rain delay, it was hard to remember it was Johnny Cueto and David Price who started this game. But the story was more about Frazier, Bruce and the unlikely late-night magic of the Reds.

The last great Jay Bruce in a Reds Uniform Memory?

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[Reds 4, Padres 0]

The Reds season is a mess, and they’re going to blow this thing up. But on this Sunday, Johnny Cueto and Jay Bruce turned back the clock.

Cueto threw seven shutout innings and struck out nine for his fourth victory of the year. It kind of stinks because days like today are just auditions for a contender.

And we can’t begin to figure out Jay Bruce, we’re absolutely done trying. We cut him from one of our most important fantasy teams late last night. It figures that he would have a day like he did today. There’s probably no salvaging things for Bruce long-term in a Reds uniform at this point. He either plays poorly and he’s a goner, or he plays well and the Reds move him shortly after the All-Star game. You look at the calender, and it’s June 7th. It’s possible that Jay Bruce could just have over a month left in a Reds uniform, and it’s kind of a sad realization to accept that he’s never going to become a franchise cornerstone.

That said, the guy is still making memories. He drove in all four Reds runs today with a towering solo homer to get them on the board, and a three run blast later in the game to cement the win. He’s up to nine home runs on the year.

There will come a day that we’ll have to eulogize Bruce as a Red on this blog. But today is not that day.

We just wish the Reds were playing meaningful baseball games at this point. But they’re stuck in the mud as we suspected. Today was just a three hour lapse in what is sure to be a season of pain.