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Jay Bruce on rough 2014 season: “It’s honestly been the most embarrassing year of my life”

Aug 31, 2014, 10:53 AM EST

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Jay Bruce finished 0-for-3 with two strikeouts in Saturday’s loss to the Pirates and is now batting .217/.292/.369 with 130 strikeouts in 114 total games this season. He’s sporting a career-worst .661 OPS and it looks like he’ll finish with fewer than 20 home runs for the first time since breaking into the major leagues in 2008. On a related note, Cincinnati is six games below the .500 mark entering play Sunday.

Bruce opened up about his rough 2014 campaign Saturday to beat writer Mark Sheldon of MLB.com

“It’s been miserable. It’s honestly been the most embarrassing year of my life,” Bruce said on Saturday. “But I know this isn’t me. It’s definitely humbling, not that I needed to be more humbled by anything. I feel like I’m pretty self-aware and have some humility. It’s just one of those things. You have to find a way to take some positive out of it to get better. … You just have to keep working and not give into the frustration, to the pressure, to everything that comes with struggling and not being 100 percent. I know it’s been miserable to watch for everybody. I understand it. It’s miserable for me to watch too.”

Bruce missed a chunk of time in May following arthroscopic surgery to repair torn meniscus cartilage in his right knee. And while he wouldn’t fully admit that there’s still discomfort in that joint, Bruce did tell Sheldon on Saturday that he is looking “forward to the offseason, getting home and having it get to 100 percent.”

Bruce, 27, is owed $12 million in 2015 and $12.5 million in 2106 with a $13 million club option for 2017.

  1. doctorrustbelt - Aug 31, 2014 at 10:56 AM

    Jay Bruce is still 7000 times better than slow, poor fielding loser Adam Dunn.

    • sportsfan18 - Aug 31, 2014 at 11:33 AM

      check their stats sir…

      then get back to us…

      sorry, I couldn’t wait…

      Bruce career OPS+ 112
      Dunn career OPS+ 124

      let’s check out some company with Dunn at 124 OPS+ and just above and below him for fun huh?

      Victor Martinez career 124 OPS+
      Nomar Garciaparra 124 OPS+
      Jeff Kent 123 OPS+

      Troy Tulowitzki 125 OPS+

      Bruce career .325 on base percentage (kinda what ya wanna do when you come up to the plate)
      Dunn career .365 on base percentage (that’s with all his strikeouts, still got on base a lot MORE)

      Dunn out slugs Bruce too

      but, Bruce is much better in the field than Dunn was for sure.

      about that speed though. yeah, Dunn is slow.

      But Dunn has 63 stolen bases in his career and he’s only been caught 25 times.

      Bruce has 48 stolen bases in his career but he’s been caught 28 times already.

      When Bruce gets to 63 stolen bases, if he gets caught at the same rate up to now, he’ll have been caught stealing 35 times to only 25 times for Dunn.

      Guess Bruce doesn’t know how to use his “speed” and Dunn is able to work around his being “slow”.

      • doctorrustbelt - Aug 31, 2014 at 12:44 PM

        Jay Bruce (893 games in outfield) = 32 errors

        Adam Dung (1083 games in outfield) = 69 errors

        Don’t forget the GIANT DIFFERENCE in range between Jay Bruce and Adam Dung.

        Slow, non-instinctual Dung would let everything fall in for a hit as he lumbered around like a neanderthal in the outfield.

    • 78mu - Aug 31, 2014 at 1:38 PM

      Dunn may be the worst fielding outfielder in the last 50 years.

      But why did the Reds keep running him out there instead of playing him at 1B (where he’d only be one of the worst fielding 1B in the last 50 years) or trading him to an AL team? It’s hard to believe it took 10 years to go to the AL. And why did it take until 2010 for a team to finally figure out that if hehas to play in the field he does the least amount of damage at 1B? With his ability to get on base and hit the long ball you can live with him at 1B.

      He’s been a terrible OF but had he played his entire career as a DH his lifetime WAR would be out of reach by Bruce.

  2. klingonj - Aug 31, 2014 at 11:21 AM

    I’m a Yankee fan, we would take him in a minute

  3. bbk1000 - Aug 31, 2014 at 11:40 AM

    “Bruce, 27, is owed $12 million in 2015 and $12.5 million in 2106 with a $13 million club option for 2017.”

    2106? the Reds took the Bobby Bonilla contract a step further….

    • recoveringcubsfan - Aug 31, 2014 at 11:50 AM

      Not really a comparison, in my opinion. Bruce is young and $12mil is less than a qualifying offer. I think it’s a fine contract for a player who has yet to fully peak and who has 40-HR power. In that ballpark, anyway. And as for the Dunn comps – the difference is walks. Bruce might yet add that facet to his game, but personally I think he should swing as hard as he can and just try to hit HRs right now.

      • recoveringcubsfan - Aug 31, 2014 at 11:52 AM

        Ooh, I just caught the typo!

        Me stupid. Call me Big Donkey.

      • sportsfan18 - Aug 31, 2014 at 12:51 PM

        recovering…

        you said… “And as for the Dunn comps – the difference is walks. Bruce might yet add that facet to his game, but personally I think he should swing as hard as he can and just try to hit HRs right now.”

        well, so far in his career, Bruce has hit a HR once per every 19.43 at bats with not so many walks.

        Dunn has hit an HR once every 14.82 at bats with a LOT of walks.

        So, if Bruce is only going to hit HR’s (and not walk), he better start hitting HR’s…

        he’ll never catch Dunn’s career average of one HR per every 14.82 at bats…

        oh, Bruce will never come close to Dunn’s on base percentage for his career either.

        since he hits fewer hr’s than Dunn, he should be walking a lot more to make up for the difference.

        won’t happen, can’t happen. Bruce is OK, he’s good, but he’ll never come close to
        Dunn’s career numbers.

  4. kraa0901 - Aug 31, 2014 at 2:35 PM

    doctorrustbelt- looks like you might want to quit while your ahead. From the looks of it sportsfan has you in a vice grip here- argument done and over.

  5. kelswhit77 - Sep 1, 2014 at 10:03 AM

    Jay came back way too soon from the torn meniscus repair. I had that same procedure 3 weeks ago, and though I’m progressing faster than average, the PT docs still say 8 weeks total time to resume full normal activities. Not 100% strength and speed! just able to do all activities. So I’m a Jay Bruce fan, and though the Reds results have been disappointing, their effort and hustle have not. Unlike the last ten days of 2013, when they all seemed to be going through the motions, this team is giving an outstanding effort every game, regardless if the outcome. A best example if this was being down 7-0 to the Cardinals in the 9th at St. Louis, and rallying for 3 runs and actually having the tying run at the plate. As an avid Reds fan since 1970, I sincerely appreciate that typed of effort. Hang in there guys, we are still with you!

    • kelswhit77 - Sep 1, 2014 at 10:05 AM

      Hate the iPad spellcheck that turns ‘of’ to ‘if’…..regardless OF the outcome……

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