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(NOTE: This originally ran on May 18th.) Jay Bruce could be called up from the minors relatively soon. UPDATED: The Cincinnati Enquirer reports that Jay Bruce will be called up before Tuesday’s game. So I figured I should give you a breakdown, but then Baron Von Vulturewins, a regular commenter in the Razzpound and an all-around good guy (actually, he could be writing in from jail, I have no idea), did a great breakdown of Jay Bruce in the comments. So without further ado — the Baron on Jay Bruce (I edited some for breadth), “Pros: Jay Bruce is the consensus top prospect in baseball. He’s most often compared to Larry Walker — i.e. big power potential with speed and high avg., i.e. tasty. He’s currently at .366 AVG, 8 HR, 33 RBIs, 7 SB, .662 SLG in Triple-A. (And he started slow, so he’s been on an absolute tear of late.) Baseball Prospectus’ notoriously gloomy PECOTA projections put him at 29 HR this year (assuming a full season in the bigs, I’m guessing.) …All the indicators are there for Jay Bruce to succeed: bad team with several trade-bait veteran OFs, a local media clamoring to get this kid to the show — he’ll be playing in one of the NL’s premiere bandboxes, i.e. Cincy.

Cons: Two years ago, Alex Gordon was the CTPiB (consensus top etc.) and, well, we’ve seen that he hasn’t turned into “Boog Powell minus eighty pounds of custard” quite yet. (Some of us have watched this more closely, and more painfully, than others.) Cincy has a long, inglorious history of carrying one too many OFs, and driving fantasy owners insane with idiotic non-platoon OF switcheroos (see: Freel, Ryan). This is all compounded by the fact that Dusty Baker also has a history of mishandling/not trusting young players, though he seems to have put his faith in Joey Votto this year, which augurs (Word of the Day) well for Bruce.

Bottom line: Bruce could well go the way of Gordon ‘07, or he could just as easily go the way of Braun ‘07. Having missed out on the latter last year through pure Yahoo!-induced phenom fatigue (they hype everyone like they’re a young Babe Ruth, so by mid-May, you’re tuning it out) I don’t plan to miss out on it this year. So my money’s on Bruce. Given what you have to invest — i.e. nothing, save a bench spot for a few weeks.” Well said, Baron. I agree, if you have a bench spot, go for Bruce. I had Ian Stewart for a week on my bench and it didn’t cost me anything. Stewart didn’t get the call, so I dropped him. UPDATED: I did grab him again in some leagues, but I think Jay Bruce is more valuable than Stewart at this time with a better chance for playing time. If you have the spot, it makes sense to take a flier as they say in the biz (which biz that is, I’m not sure).

31 Responses

  1. BigFatHippo says:
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    You the man Grey.

    Best news I’ve had since I dropped the kids off today and the ex didn’t ask for money.

    Now I can deal Gomez for a catcher.

    Baron V V is the Man on Yahoo by the way (he makes the most sense) and he could be in jail, judging by his Raider Nation pic.

  2. B.J. says:
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    Well I missed out on Bruce and now I feel like a douchebag. I had a feeling he was going to get called up and of course he does and my brother grabbed him. Now I’m trying to work out a trade to get him.

  3. p0rk burn says:
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    Dammit, who do I drop to pick up Bruce!?! I know Grey’s rule of thumb is worst ranked middle reliever but I might make an exception and ditch Hoffman. I picked him up as a free agent last Thursday after noticing he had been sitting there for a month (swapped out Torres for him) and needless to say he hasn’t helped me out in any way, shape, or form. Its either Hoffman, Perez, or Ludwick who I picked up earlier in the week. Only thing stopping me is I need a closer with just Nathan and Street manning the fort currently.

    Outfield is McLouth, El Caballo, Alfonso, Rios, and Ludwick. Im thinking about dealing McLouth now that he is starting to cool off and his hot start is still in people’s minds. Drop Ludwick for Bruce and try to trade McLouth? Drop Hoffman? Ignore the rookie hype because my outfield is stacked? Its an embarrassment of riches.

  4. Steve says:
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    Yeah – you have to figure that if Stewart can’t make the lineup with Atkins out again, he’s not going to see a lot of action.

    I’m tempted to drop him for Doumit ahead of him coming off the DL (although it would leave a hole a 3B if Atkins is out for any length of time). Thoughts?

  5. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @B.J.: Don’t give away too much.

    @p0rk burn: I apologize if you’ve recently answered this but there’s a lot of questions. Is this a holds league? If not, drop Perez. If it is, hold tight.

    @Steve: Do you have to activate Doumit immediately? If not, let Stewart go for a few days. If you have to, then drop Stewart and let Atkins start at 3B.

  6. BigFatHippo says:
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    @p0rk burn:

    #3

    As a Cardinal diehard, I say Ludwick, knock on wood. Hope he doesn’t hit the skids but got a feeling his great run is out of gas. I’m holding him for a while(with fingers crossed but he struck out 4 times last night) and putting in Bruce every day. That dude will rake, grab him, can’t believe he’s available.

    Whatever you do, don’t drop Perez! Flat out stud closer in waiting.

  7. Steve says:
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    No real need to activate him immediately – I have Navarro, really just want to make sure I get him. Want him for a couple of weeks before Posada comes back.

  8. johnson says:
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    bruce may well be the next braun, but i’m not gonna give my first born male and a kidney to get him. i think his real impact is still a year or two away. i smell too much hype for a young guy. smells like max the nazi sherzergfdkljhdg, gordon, and i’m sure rasmus will too.
    but what do you think about andrew miller? he’s looked good his past few starts. is he just showing signs of whats to come next year/years to come, or has he got his stuff together? i picked him up for a spot start and wanted to know your thoughts on holding him or dropping him for the next hot pitcher to spot.

  9. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @johnson: I think there are way too many usable pitchers that are safer. With a crizzappy rookie hitter, you get an 0-for-18 and bench him or move on. There’s very little downside and possible upside. With a rookie pitcher, he could kill your ratios for an entire week. Miller’s the type that could do that. I’d proceed with caution.

  10. BSA says:
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    Well, holidays and birthday parties kept me out of the Bruce news for the coming week. I’ll give him a test run in his second week. I’m glad I jumped on him last week when the June 1st call-up prediction was floated out there. My outfield of Pence, Vlad, and Quentin has been performing pretty nicely so a decision will be tough. I’ll now have five outfielders (Bruce, Vlad, Pence, Quentin, and Victorino), Votto, and Figgins on my bench for 3 outfield holes and a utility spot to fill.

  11. p0rk burn says:
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    @Grey: Yeah its a holds league. Guess I’ll have to watch somebody else play the Bruce lottery. I’m sort of with Hippo on this, I’m not entirely sure Ludwick is going to keep it up, but then I again you have to look at what he has actually done this season versus what Bruce *might* do.

    What about moving McLouth? Should I hang on to him with that cast in the outfield or is it time to flip him? I feel that the only thing I could really use is a SP because I’m not lacking in any other area (besides closers). What does the brain trust feel McLouth could fetch regarding SPs or closers?

  12. B.J. says:
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    Well it doesn’t look like he’s willing to move Bruce at this time so maybe I’ll stick with what I’ve got. I’m in 1st by a big margin so getting Bruce would have been a luxury not a need.

  13. BSA says:
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    Not that this blog needs a plug or rah! rah! but I just flipped over to my league’s start page and for the last couple of weeks I have noticed that changes on my team are showing up as the lead article a week or so after I made the move. Two things must occur, 1. leaguemates read and go look for that player and “BURN” I got him already, and 2. the info is supporting what I’m picking up here from Grey, Rudy, and others. The key for me is that the team I, OK “we”, put together is built for the long haul and not just quick hot streaks and spurts. Makes me feel like I know what I am doing with only one year under my belt. Thanks guys! Now to work on not getting pissed off when my bench performs better than the team I put out there. It felt great watching Ryan two weeks ago rack it up while sitting on my bench (side note: he earned 50+ and I lost my first h2h of the seaason by 20 points)

  14. BSA says:
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    Since I am just checking after the long weekend and have heard mere whiffs about Kershaw can anyone tell me more? Since he and Cueto are both rookies with tremendous upside is there more value in LA or Cincinatti? I have Cueto and Kershaw is still available. Just based on team and management style I am becoming inclined to get Kershaw instead. Cueto crapping the bed this past couple of weeks hasn’t helped his case on my team.

  15. Chet says:
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    So in my Yahoo NL only league Bruce is of course gone. I have the #2 waiver claim and I will probably get trumped on Kershaw. Are there going to be any NL call ups that will go on Yahoo waivers worth my soon to be #1 waiver claim? It sure gets my goat when call ups are already on some douchenheimer’s roster.

  16. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @p0rk burn: I’d try and move Ludwick if anyone’s totally buying into his hot start. I’m not a huge believer in McLouth because his career average leaves a lot to be desired, but his power and speed are for real. Could get 30/17 with a .270 average. Moving McLouth should net you a solid number one pitcher with issues, say a Lackey or Bedard.

    @BSA: I’d go with Kershaw, but I’d try and trade Cueto. But if your league hasn’t picked up Kershaw maybe they don’t care or want Cueto. Hard to say…

    @Chet: Chase Headley should be on your team already. He’ll be called up in a week probably. But he’s available already in Y!. Waiver wise, not sure who will be next, Pearce and Rasmus haven’t been great…. Maybe Gamel or Jaime Garcia, but unless I’m missing someone no big name NL prospect is due very soon.

  17. @p0rk burn: I’ve become a fan of McLouth. I don’t think he’ll keep up this power but I thought he had 20/20 potential going into the season and he’s definitely proven that. Agree with Grey – if you can get Lackey, Bedard, Haren, Hamels, etc., I’d make the trade. But I trust McLouth more than Ludwick…

  18. BSA says:
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    I am going to try and package, though my leaguemates “hate” trading. Cueto with Rauch for Valverde. That way I get an open roster spot. I’ll work it for two days and then go for an add/drop. My league is pretty stuck on picking up and dropping pitchers who have two starts for the coming week.

  19. Kevin says:
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    Jay Bruce will be a shot in the arm to my fourth outfield slot, currently shared by the “Space Cowboys” trio of Gary Sheffield (39), Ken Griffey Jr (38), and Moises Alou (41).

    Of course, his pizz-poor K:BB rate could render him as futile as the three old men.

  20. Endless Summer says:
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    I’ve got Jay Bruce and loving the news. What are people expecting out of Headley? He has to play at Petco. Is he worth picking up and dropping for Daniel Cabrera, Alexei Ramirez, Travis Hafner, or Joey Votto? They are all backups for me anyways.

    I just traded Miguel Cabrera for Evan Longoria and Edinson Volquez. Things are looking good this week.

  21. mike says:
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    I got offered Bedard for Oswalt and Rickie Weeks….I think its worth it for Bedard.What do you think?

  22. Endless Summer says:
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    I don’t know if other commenters are supposed to reply, but I would do that trade mike. Bedard seems to always get some bad starts at the beginning of the season. I wouldn’t want Oswalt or Weeks anywhere near my team. I think the other owner is panicking and I would jump on it.

  23. Endless Summer says:
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    Bedard’s Home/Road splits

    Home
    26.2 IP 16 H 5 ER 1.69 ERA .174 BAA .570 OPS

    Away
    19.1 IP 24 H 19 ER 8.84 ERA .289 BAA .912 OPS

  24. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @mike: I would go for Bedard there, as well.

    @Endless Summer: We welcome all comments. I would drop Alexei for Headley.

  25. Steve says:
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    @Grey: I know this is about Bruce, but I have him safely installed in my Util spot for tomorrow ;-) – so, would I be too hasty in getting rid of Navarro for Doumit? The guy just keeps hitting.

    And come to that, is either Doumit or Navarro going to be a better option than Posada over the season?

  26. cockyphoenix says:
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    So Bruce getting called up before I figured he would threw a wrench in the fluidity of my adds and drops. In one league, I have 3 closers with jobs (Fuentes, Sherrill, Ryan) and 2 not so sure (Pérez, Torres). Do Isringhausen and Franklin suck enough to drop Torres over Pérez or do I go with depth chart over talent? Bruce/Kershaw want to be added right away.

    @Steve: I’m no expert and am biased for having him on my team but I say you have to go with Dioner Navarro. At 24 years old he hasn’t shown his full power potential and he’s still quick enough to steal bases and stretch extra base hits. Doumit’s strength so far has been his average, which is something Navarro’s no slouch in.

  27. IowaCubs

    IowaCubs says:
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    I am a golden god. I traded Kerry Wood for Bruce and Bailey three weeks ago, and now I feel very smart.

    Hooray for me.

  28. Grey

    Grey says:
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    @Steve: I would go back to Doumit and trade away Posada for a closer or some small part you need.

    *Take followup questions into the newest post, so it’s easier for me to follow.*

    @cockyphoenix: I’d drop Perez over Torres, because I’d want saves.

    *Take followup questions into the newest post, so it’s easier for me to follow.*

  29. Carl says:
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    Hallefreakinlujah…my god, what the hell were the Reds waiting for? It’s about friggin’ time. I don’t care about the K/BB ratio, this boy can rake!

    This is great, I go from having a wasted bench spot on a Triple A player providing no production to a young starting OF with loads of talent over night!

    He has Ian Snell tonight who has been so-so this year, hopefully he can shake the nerves and let his talent take over.

  30. Alright, riddle me this bat-man – Headley or Stewart if one has a choice of the two.

  31. Get Figgy With It says:
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    So Yahoo just clearly stole my nickname for Jay Bruce that I claimed about a week ago.

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