As they seek a left-handed bat this offseason, the Toronto Blue Jays look likely to take another shot at acquiring Jay Bruce.
In each of the last two offseasons, the Toronto Blue Jays have tried to make a trade for outfielder Jay Bruce. But a deal in February of 2016 fell through, due to medical concerns attached to a prospect in the deal, and the New York Mets found no deal they liked enough to move Bruce last winter.
The Blue Jays also had some interest in Bruce during this past season, before he was sent to the Cleveland Indians in a post-deadline August trade.
Bruce is now set to hit free agency, and the Blue Jays may be hoping to finally get their man. According to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, Toronto is (obviously?) expected to have interest in Bruce.
The Blue Jays have now officially declined Jose Bautista’s $17 million option for next season, and they have enough right-handed/switch-hitting power hitters any way (Josh Donaldson, Justin Smoak, Kendrys Morales). What they need most is a left-handed power hitter to balance things out a bit, and Bruce is surely that.
Bruce set a career-high with 36 home runs for the Mets and Indians in 2017, with 101 RBI and a .832 OPS that are the second and third-best of his career in those respective categories. He now has five 30-plus home runs seasons in his career, and he’s a three-time All-Star from his time with the Cincinnati Reds.
The Indians are known to be interested in re-signing Bruce, and he did not close the door on going back to the Mets as a free agent this offseason. So the Blue Jays will have competition for one of the top power hitters available in free agency, which they surely know already based on past experience.