Jay Bruce
Jay Bruce
34-Year-Old OutfielderOF
 Free Agent  
Free Agent
2021 Fantasy Outlook
Bruce's 2020 campaign was very similar to his 2019 performance. Injuries limited him to just over half a season's worth of games yet again, while he produced his typically lopsided slash line. He performed worse across the board than in 2019, however, with his slash line dipping from .216/.261/.523 to .198/.252/.469. A .197 BABIP undoubtedly depressed his line by a fair amount, though a complete lack of speed and a flyball-heavy batted-ball profile has seen him run quite low BABIPs for most of his career. Bruce still has a decent amount of pop, homering six times in 103 plate appearances, but that's just about all he offers at this point. It's hard to envision a team giving too many starts to a player who owns a .259 on-base percentage over the last two seasons, so he'll probably be limited to bench duties this season if he gets any big-league job at all. Read Past Outlooks
RANKSFrom Preseason
#579
ADP
$Signed a one-year, $1.35 million contract with the Yankees in February of 2021.
Retiring after Sunday's game
OFNew York Yankees  
April 18, 2021
Bruce plans to retire from baseball following the Yankees' game Sunday against the Rays, Kristie Ackert of the New York Daily News reports.
ANALYSIS
The 34-year-old is out of the lineup for a third straight game Sunday after starting the season 4-for-34 with 13 strikeouts, and he's now decided to hang up his cleats after 14 seasons. Bruce has a .244/.314/.467 slash line with 319 home runs and 951 RBI in 1650 career games between the Reds, Mets, Phillies, Mariners, Yankees and Cleveland. The veteran slugger will be available off the bench one final time Sunday.
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Batting Stats
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2021
2020
2019
2018
2017
2021 MLB Game Log
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2020 MLB Game Log
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2019 MLB Game Log
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2018 MLB Game Log
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2017 MLB Game Log
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Batting Order Slot Breakdown
vs Right-Handed Pitchers
vs RHP
#1
#2
#3
#4
#5
#6
#7
#8
#9
1
2
2
1
vs Left-Handed Pitchers
vs LHP
#1
#2
#3
#4
#5
#6
#7
#8
#9
2
1
1
Left/Right Batting Splits
Since 2019
 
 
+16%
OPS vs RHP
2021
 
 
+26%
OPS vs LHP
2020
 
 
+238%
OPS vs RHP
2019
 
 
+2%
OPS vs LHP
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2019vs Left .677 111 11 6 19 1 .188 .261 .416
Since 2019vs Right .788 350 46 27 57 0 .215 .260 .528
2021vs Left .536 14 1 0 2 0 .167 .286 .250
2021vs Right .427 25 2 1 1 0 .091 .200 .227
2020vs Left .278 18 1 0 1 0 .111 .111 .167
2020vs Right .941 71 10 6 13 0 .246 .310 .631
2019vs Left .798 79 9 6 16 1 .211 .291 .507
2019vs Right .779 254 34 20 43 0 .218 .252 .527
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Home/Away Batting Splits
Since 2019
 
 
+35%
OPS on Road
2021
 
 
+190%
OPS at Home
2020
 
 
+21%
OPS at Home
2019
 
 
+66%
OPS on Road
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2019Home .635 246 28 13 32 1 .161 .236 .399
Since 2019Away .860 229 29 20 44 0 .249 .279 .581
2021Home .620 25 3 1 3 0 .150 .320 .300
2021Away .214 14 0 0 0 0 .071 .071 .143
2020Home .766 66 9 4 8 0 .206 .242 .524
2020Away .634 37 2 2 6 0 .182 .270 .364
2019Home .576 155 16 8 21 1 .143 .219 .357
2019Away .957 178 27 18 38 0 .276 .298 .659
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Stat Review
How does Jay Bruce compare to other hitters?
This section compares his stats with all batting seasons from the previous three seasons (minimum 400 plate appearances)*. The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that stat and it would be considered average.

* Exit Velocity and Barrels/PA % are benchmarked against 2019 data (min 400 PA) and Hard Hit Rate is benchmarked against last season's data (min 400 PA). See here for more exit velocity/barrels stats plus an explanation of current limitations with that data set.
  • BB/K
    Walk to strikeout ratio
  • BB Rate
    The percentage of plate appearances resulting in a walk.
  • K Rate
    The percentage of plate appearances resulting in a strikeout.
  • BABIP
    Batting average on balls in play. Measures how many of a batter’s balls in play go for hits.
  • ISO
    Isolated Power. Slugging percentage minus batting average. A computation used to measure a batter's raw power.
  • AVG
    Batting average. Hits divided by at bats.
  • OBP
    On Base Percentage. A measure of how often a batters reaches base. Roughly equal to number of times on base divided by plate appearances.
  • SLG
    Slugging Percentage. A measure of the batting productivity of a hitter. It is calculated as total bases divided by at bats.
  • OPS
    On base plus slugging. THe sum of a batter's on-base percentage and slugging percentage.
  • wOBA
    Weighted on-base average. Measures a player's overall offensive contributions per plate appearance. wOBA combines all the different aspects of hitting into one metric, weighting each of them in proportion to their actual run value.
  • Exit Velocity
    The speed of the baseball as it comes off the bat, immediately after a batter makes contact.
  • Hard Hit Rate
    A measure of contact quality from Sports Info Solutions. This stat explains what percentage of batted balls were hit hard vs. medium or soft.
  • Barrels/PA
    The percentage of plate appearances where a batter had a batted ball classified as a Barrel. A Barrel is a batted ball with similar exit velocity and launch angle to past ones that led to a minimum .500 batting average and 1.500 slugging percentage.
BB/K
0.38
 
BB Rate
12.8%
 
K Rate
33.3%
 
BABIP
.150
 
ISO
.118
 
AVG
.118
 
OBP
.231
 
SLG
.235
 
OPS
.466
 
wOBA
.221
 
Exit Velocity
78.6 mph
 
Hard Hit Rate
19.0%
 
Barrels/PA
0.0%
 
Advanced Batting Stats
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Additional Stats
Games By Position
Defensive Stats
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Batted Ball Stats
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Stats Vs Upcoming Pitchers
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Jay Bruce
AL FAAB Factor: Waiver Pickups of the Week
43 days ago
Erik Siegrist sifts through the free-agent options in the AL as Nate Pearson gets set to rejoin the Blue Jays rotation.
DraftKings MLB: Sunday Breakdown
50 days ago
Dan Marcus is touting Alex Bregman and company against Rich Hill and the Rays.
AL FAAB Factor: Waiver Pickups of the Week
57 days ago
Erik Siegrist looks over the available talent in the American League as Luis Patino becomes one of the first elite prospects to get a promotion to the big leagues in 2021.
AL FAAB Factor: Waiver Pickups of the Week
64 days ago
Erik Siegrist takes a look at the AL free-agent pool and sees a clear path to value for Willie Calhoun if he can get into a groove at the plate.
The Z Files: The Fallacy of Stabilization and an Early Look at Home Runs
72 days ago
Todd Zola offers some thoughts on early-season trends, including the home run surge led by Nick Castellanos and the Reds.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
2020
2019
2018
2017
2016
2015
2014
2013
2012
2011
2010
2009
2008
2007
2006
After coming over in a timely trade from Seattle in early June, just days before Andrew McCutchen tore his ACL, Bruce endeared himself to Phillies fans by hitting four homers in his first four games with his new team. On the whole, however, the 32-year-old was only modestly productive. He did manage 26 homers despite injuries limiting him to just 98 games, but his lopsided .216/.261/.523 slash line was only good for a below-average 98 wRC+, not good enough for a player limited to first base and the outfield corners. From a fantasy perspective, Bruce's line was certainly skewed in the way that owners outside of OBP leagues would prefer, but real baseball teams have a hard time carrying a player who reaches base barely more than a quarter of the time. Bruce is unlikely to suddenly improve in his 13th big-league season, so he's likely limited to a power-hitting bench role unless someone gets injured.
Injuries played a huge role in Bruce’s 2018 season. He missed time early in the season due to plantar fasciitis, then was held out due to back soreness before a hip strain sidelined him for two months over the summer. When all was said and done, the veteran appeared in just 94 games, a career low. He also posted his worst marks in home runs (nine), extra-base hits (28), slugging percentage (.370), RBI (37) and ISO (.147). There were a few positive things to note from his 2018 season, however. He produced his best walk rate ever, his strikeout rate went down and his 7.7% home-run-to-flyball rate was far below his career average, suggesting his power could bounce back a bit in 2019. After being traded from the Mets to the Mariners during the offseason, Bruce does not face many playing-time question marks. He figures to be the primary left fielder, giving him plenty of opportunities to rebuild his value as a relatively cheap source of power.
Bruce's 2017 season was basically a carbon copy of his 2016 campaign. There were the usual peaks and valleys, but the final numbers were highly valuable. He once again split time between two organizations, landing with the Indians in a trade after spending the previous season between Cincinnati and New York. Bruce improved his walk rate, boosting it from 7.5 percent to 9.2 percent, while maintaining a reasonable 22.5 strikeout percentage. His ISO and hard-hit marks both ranked within the top 20 among qualified hitters, and improved defense helped Bruce's real-life value heading into free agency. Bruce still struggles against lefties -- he hit .222/.285/.433 against them last season and has a .226/.291/.421 line against them for his career -- but he has a long track record of success against righties, and he's still young for a player with a decade of major-league experience. He signed a three-year deal with the Mets and figures to serve as a placeholder for Michael Conforto (shoulder) before eventually moving to first base.
After a couple of frustrating seasons, Bruce rebounded in 2016, fueled by his lowest strikeout rate since his 2009 sophomore campaign. His power stroke returned with 33 homers, the second-highest total of his career. The veteran's tenure in Cincinnati ended when the Reds shipped Bruce to the Mets at the trade deadline. As he's done throughout his career, Bruce struggled versus lefties though not as much as usual, recording a .678 OPS. Still, he's a candidate to lose playing time against southpaws. Further, Bruce frequently faces defensive shifts and his batting average suffers as a result. His .250 average was buoyed by a jump in line drives and hard-hit percent along with more homers, but be wary of a repeat as a lot must go right again, including maintaining his improved contact rate. Bruce's power looks bankable, just be ready to buffer a likely dip in average.
Bruce has never developed into the superstar that the Reds thought he might become, and now it appears that his crippling-low batting average is the new normal as more teams continue to shift aggressively against him. His power mostly returned in 2015, as he raised his ISO back over .200 by slugging 26 homers. As the Reds continue their fire sale, Bruce is a good candidate to get dealt, but he might not get hurt as badly as former teammate Todd Frazier by the change in location. He's hit 39 homers at home over the last three years, and 35 away from the cozy confines of Great American Ballpark. Bruce is due $12.5 million in 2016 with a $13 million team option for 2017.
It's convenient to blame Bruce's struggles on the knee injury that sidelined him in early May, but it might still be the primary cause for his struggles. He was first sidelined on May 4 and the expectation was that he'd be out four weeks. He returned from the DL on May 21. Did his swing change because he was compensating for the injury? It's a reasonable guess. His approach at the plate became a mess because of his struggles -- he swung far less often at pitches in the zone than he did at any point during his career. He hit fewer line drives and even fewer flyballs. A return to prominence isn't guaranteed, but a full recovery from the injury this offseason could go a long way toward helping him recoup his swing. Opposing teams employed radical shifts more than ever against him last year and it had a pronounced effect on his batting average, so don't expect him to hit better than .250, but the power should return.
It took Bruce 20 games to hit his first homer of the season, and he ended April with the sole long ball. He subsequently hit a combined 17 homers in May and June, perfectly illustrating his streakiness. There is some hope that Bruce is entering his prime years, but 2013 didn't bring any evidence - just more of the same. Mind you, 30-100 seasons aren't bad by any measure, but he hasn't improved his contact rate at a point in his career where that next step should take place. A power spike could theoretically happen, but owners shouldn't rely upon him becoming a high-average, elite power hitter.
Has Bruce hit his upper plateau, or is there another peak left for him to climb? On one hand, Bruce turns 26 at the start of the 2013 season, and hitters often peak in their age 27-29 seasons. His isolated power is trending upward, hitting a career-high .263 last season. On the other hand, his contact rate hasn't improved over the last three years, in fact taking a slight turn for the worse in 2012. Our guess is that his batting average won't show much luck-independent improvement, but there could be a few 40-homer seasons in his future if he remains in Cincinnati.
Bruce's career trajectory is on the rise. He saw career highs in every major counting category to go along with a career-high walk rate and isolated slugging percentage. He improved his performance against left-handers, at least in terms of hitting for power. He has one of the better right-field arms in the game, for those of you in simulation games like Strat-O-Matic or Scoresheet. His low contact rate (73 percent in each of the last two seasons) will prevent him from being an elite hitter for average, but stardom is on his doorstep otherwise. At age 25 in 2012, there's still room for improvement.
Bruce started slowly for the Reds in 2010, hitting into a decent share of bad luck in April, mixed in with a low contact rate. The luck turned around midseason and Bruce finished the year on fire, ending up with a career-high .846 OPS. He's capable of hitting 30-35 homers at his peak, which might occur in the next couple of seasons. He has a big home/road split, but any concern over that has been washed away by his six-year, $51 million contract extension signed in the offseason. The only factor keeping him from being among the elite fantasy outfielders is a lack of stolen bases - he seems unlikely to top double-digits in any given season.
While there are signs that Bruce is *this* close to breaking out (.222 BABIP, improved walk rate and contact rate), his troubles against lefties are a significant problem. Only two of his 22 homers were against southpaws, and he was starting to get benched against select lefties before his wrist injury in July. Keep in mind that he turns just 23 in April, so there's plenty of time for him to improve, but hope that the Reds (and Dusty Baker) share your patience.
Bruce's big major league splash and preseason hype makes his .254/.314/.453 season seem like a disappointment, but keep in mind he did this as a 21-year-old, with only 115 games above A-ball under his belt. Bruce needs to improve his pitch selection (33 walks, 110 strikeouts in 413 at-bats) and lefties throttled him (.190/.263/.299 in 137 at-bats). But improvement in both areas is possible and likely - get him now in dynasty leagues, while the price is still low.
The Reds are in a tricky spot with Bruce, seeing him advance far quicker than they expected. While he still strikes out too frequently, he's very close to being ready for the majors. Yet the team has a surplus of outfielders and new manager Dusty "I haven't seen him play yet" Baker is someone who seems less inclined to pencil him in the lineup right away. The Reds' trade of Josh Hamilton might open up the door for Bruce to start in Cincinnati right away, although at press time there was still some talk that the team was interested in signing Mike Cameron. He's adjusted rapidly to the level of competition with each promotion, so he's likely to succeed right away once he gets that shot.
Bruce had another solid campaign, tearing apart the low-A Midwest League at age 19. Obviously it will get tougher as he climbs the ladder, but so far he's fulfilling the potential the Reds saw when they made him their first-round pick in the 2005 draft. He needs to cut down on his strikeouts some (after all, he's a Red -- who in their organization doesn't need to cut down on his strikeouts?) but if he's not already owned in your Ultra League, you should put him near the top of your prospect lists.
Bruce was drafted out of high school in Texas with the number 12 overall pick in the 2005 draft. His power potential is significant, but he needs quite a bit of refining, particularly in managing the strike zone.
More Fantasy News
Remains on bench Saturday
OFNew York Yankees  
April 17, 2021
Bruce isn't starting Saturday's game against the Rays.
ANALYSIS
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Out of Friday's lineup
OFNew York Yankees  
April 16, 2021
Bruce is not in the lineup Friday against the Rays.
ANALYSIS
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Gets first day off
OFNew York Yankees  
April 11, 2021
Bruce is out of the lineup for Sunday's game against the Rays.
ANALYSIS
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Swats first homer with Yankees
OFNew York Yankees  
April 6, 2021
Bruce went 1-for-3 with a solo home run, a walk and another run scored during Tuesday's win over Baltimore.
ANALYSIS
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Makes Opening Day roster
OFNew York Yankees  
March 27, 2021
Bruce will make the Yankees' Opening Day roster, Jack Curry of YES Network reports.
ANALYSIS
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