The New York Mets trade for Cincinnati Reds outfielder Jay Bruce is on hold due to a medical issue, according to ESPN's Jerry Crasnick.
This marks the second straight year the Mets and Reds discussed a trade for Bruce, with talks falling apart last year when the Reds' demands were more than the Mets were comfortable with parting for the outfielder. The 12th overall pick from the 2005 MLB Draft was a three time All Star, twice took home Silver Slugger awards, finished in the Top 10 of the NL MVP voting on two occasions, and owned some of the single most beautifully coiffed hair in team history. He's hitting.265 (98-for-370) with 22 doubles, 25 homers, 80 RBI and a.875 OPS.
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The trade comes a year almost to the day of when the Mets nearly acquired Bruce last season. He has been with the Brewers for all six of his major league seasons, hitting.284 in 805 games, and his contract includes a $5.25 million team option for 2017. He's now on pace for a stellar slash-line of.265/.316/.559 with 39 dingers and 125 RBI. Coming into play, the Mets trailed the Washington Nationals by 6.5 games in the NL East and the Miami Marlins by 2.5 games in the wild card.
Bruce, 29, has played his entire career with the Reds.
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Despite my recent post about how the Mets should be sellers (I know they read it, I just know), they went ahead and bought anyway.
With concern about Cespedes' nagging right quad injury, Bruce could add some power to an already crowded Mets outfield. This would be tremendous news if there were any evidence that hitting with runners in scoring position is an actual skill. The Giants have been looking for batters, but are getting key guys off the DL which might suggest they're suddenly set, and looking locked and loaded to make it another even year World Series. Bruce's defense would be easy to gloss over if Yoenis Cespedes and Curtis Granderson were better than average in center and right field, respectively, but that's simply not the case.
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The left-handed hitting Bruce is a.271 (71-for-262) hitter this season against righties with 20 homers and 61 RBI. Last year, right-hander Michael Fulmer was dealt to Detroit for Cespedes.