By Anthony Caruso III
The Baltimore Orioles and the Cincinnati Reds have begun conversations about a trade for Reds outfielder Jay Bruce, according to Fox Sports’ Jon Morosi. At this point; however, he adds that there’s no momentum in getting the deal done.
Bruce has a lot of potential and he’s been rumored to be available since the trade deadline. However, his trade value remains uncertain, as the Reds are rebuilding and may want a lot in return for him.
He has the potential to be a 25-to-30 home run hitter next season, with or without being in Camden Yards, which is the home of the Orioles. He’s also a quality base runner and a well-regarded defender in the outfield.
Yet, the past two years, he’s been just shy of being at the league average for OBP. In addition, his base-running metrics have dipped a bit.
Bruce is just 28-years-old, but enters his ninth Major League Baseball season in 2016. He’s scheduled to make a reasonable $12.5 million in 2016 and can be controlled for another season in 2017.
He’ll have an option for the ’17 season at $13 million. In addition, he could be bought out for just a million should the team elect to not pick up that contract option.
It’s worth mentioning the Orioles interest, as the team looks for a bat this off-season. They’ve also checked in on Pittsburgh Pirates second baseman Neil Walker, who is a high-priced left-handed bat.
Bruce would make more sense for the Orioles, as they definitely have a fit in the corner outfield.
They’ve also re-signed catcher Matt Wieters, who elected to accept a one-year, price qualifying offer, so it would be interesting to see who they fill out their lineup with.
They’re not willing to over-commit for future seasons with a move, which makes the Bruce making even more sense. Plus, with the Orioles potentially losing Chris Davis – whose a free agent – they’ll try to find power elsewhere.
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