From Mark Sheldon:

The good news…

    The wrist has passed all of the tests, and there is nothing holding back Bruce in his workouts.

    “It’s felt fine and like [the injury] never happened,” Bruce said. “I’ve had no pain; it’s nonexistent. For a little bit, when I came back, it was still tight, but it’s fine now.”

Glad to hear the wrist isn’t going to be an issue.

On his dealing with the adversity of last season:

    “The adversity I dealt with last year was pretty serious,” said Bruce, who will turn 23 on April 3. “Everyone should deal with adversity, and I’m going to use it as a positive to come back this year and be the player that I know I can be.”

    It was the first time Bruce experienced such a prolonged slump or dealt with a severe injury. After all, this was the top rated prospect in all of baseball in 2008, who debuted to huge fanfare in May of that season and delivered. He reached base in each of his first six plate appearances and collected 11 hits in his first 19 at-bats. Obviously, that pace was impossible to maintain, but Bruce was mostly solid the rest of the season as he became accustomed to the ups and downs of hitting in the big leagues.

    Electing not to play winter ball and make up at-bats from the 57 games he missed last year, Bruce instead went home to Beaumont, Texas, and decompressed. Eventually, he resumed lifting weights, running, throwing and — beginning about a month ago — hitting.

His OPS+ last year was 100. That’s average…it’s not like he was a black hole. Do we want better? Sure, but he’ll be 23 around Opening Day and starting his 3rd year in the Bigs….give him a break.

Then there’s this…

    Although manager Dusty Baker would not make guarantees at last season’s end, all indications are that Bruce is secure as the Reds’ regular right fielder. The club made no outfielder acquisitions that would threaten his role.

“Make no guarantees”? “Threaten his role”? WTF, over? Mark, what are you writing, brother?

16 Responses

  1. david

    He’s writing that when Bruce went down with an injury, many thought that it was addition by subtraction given his lengthy slump. There were some that didn’t think that Bruce should have been the everday starter during periods of last year when he simply wasn’t performing. If he isn’t performing again this year, what result?

  2. david

    Before anyone jumps off the deep end… I believe Jay Bruce should be the everyday RF no question. So don’t read my comment as more than what it is.

    • Chad Dotson

      David, unless I’m misreading your comment, it looks like you are saying that Bruce shouldn’t be the everyday right fielder. How dumb.

      😉

  3. TC

    Uh oh! Chad’s feeling a bit sassy tonight. Speaking of which Chad, when can we expect the CLASH OF THE TITANS regarding Cabrera on RNR?

    • Chad Dotson

      TC: Uh oh!Chad’s feeling a bit sassy tonight.Speaking of which Chad, when can we expect the CLASH OF THE TITANS regarding Cabrera on RNR?

      Soon, perhaps. We (and by “we” I mean “Bill”) have a couple of great interviews coming up, but we’re going to try to fit in another talky-talky RN Radio episode too.

      Of course, you probably aren’t going to hear too much whining about the Cabrera signing. I wasn’t in favor of the signing, but I also have no interest in defending Paul Janish. My opinion is that they both stink. If it works out well, it’ll be a marginal upgrade. If it works out poorly, it’ll be a marginal downgrade. Nothing to get worked up about either way (other than the money angle, but Cabrera will probably be worth what he’s being paid).

  4. The Mad Hatter

    Just because it’s two weeks till pitchers and catchers and I’m feeling optimistic concerning some of the recent moves, I very upbeat concerning the seasons Bruce, Votto and Bailey are going to have this year.

  5. REDS1

    Surely he will be better this season. Last season was pretty tough to watch at times.

    • RedinFla

      REDS1: Surely he will be better this season. Last season was pretty tough to watch at times.

      Enjoyed the article on Bruce. This whole ordeal seems to have moved Jay from the “nice guy, everything comes easily for him” type to the “nice guy, works hard” type.

      I can’t wait to watch him gunning down guys dumb enough to try to score on him. 8)

  6. Luke Price

    What, Jay Bruce not being the everyday rightfielder,am I dreaming?

  7. SFRedsfan

    Disregard any mention of Bruce not being in right field- WJ will not allow that. I like the idea of the Reds depth at the moment as they have more young players than I can remember in both position and pitchers. I want to see how we finish the year. What will be the lineup in September?

  8. hoosierdad

    Maybe Mark is just trying to “stir the pot”. Actually, no way is Bruce not the starting right fielder. I am truly excited about the outfielders. You gotta figure it’s Bruce, Stubbs, and Dickerson (could throw a couple of other names in there). Would like to see Dickerson lead off. I have been wondering why not start Dickerson in CF and Stubbs in LF. Seem to remember CD having a tough time in LF last year, but always playing lights out in CF. Maybe experiment a little in ST to see if it would work out.

  9. TC

    Thanks Chad. Very much looking forward to upcoming RNR events.

  10. BJ Ruble

    I asked Jay about the injury at the Caravan in Louisville and he said it felt great. He also spoke about him being selective and swinging at pitches to drive and slowing down the game. He is so young, it is going to take some time, but I see a much more improved Bruce this year. I really liked his approach when he got back last year, and I think that will lead to a better season this year.

  11. jason1972

    I thought he looked like a whole new batter in the last 6 weeks of 2009.

  12. pinson343

    @jason1972: Yes he was using the whole field instead of trying to pull everything. He can hit for average and power if he concentrates on being a hitter rather than a “slugger.” He knows that and has said it many times. But doing it takes some confidence, he’s got to relax a bit. I think he’s gained some confidence from his strong finish and I look to a big year from JB.