Mets bring back Jay Bruce

Doug Mendoza
January 11, 2018

The free agent outfielder has agreed to a 3-year, $39 million deal with the Mets, as first reported by ESPN's Jerry Crasnick. The people spoke on condition of anonymity Wednesday night because the deal is pending a physical and no announcement had been made.

The Mets (70-92) will hope Bruce's power can help them improve upon their fourth-place NL East finish a year ago, and get them back into postseason contention.

Most importantly, however, Bruce adds to what would have been an anemic projected 2018 lineup.

Bruce's return allows the Mets time for patience with Michael Conforto, who underwent shoulder surgery last season, and Yoenis Cespedes, who played just 81 games last season due to various injuries. For the season, Bruce hit a career-high 36 homers and drove in 101 runs.

After being sent to Cleveland, however, Bruce said he enjoyed his time in NY and was open to coming back.

But the money and the length of the contract he wanted were an issue for the Mets, who have said they will be under the $154 million payroll they began 2017 with.

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But with free agency throughout the industry moving at a glacial pace, team officials remain in no hurry to make acquisitions, preferring instead to let the laws of supply and demand dictate their moves.

According to a source, the Mets are also interested in reuniting with free agent reliever Addison Reed. All together Bruce has played in five postseason series.

Jay Bruce deal with #Mets is backloaded.

They know what they are getting in Bruce.

The 30-year-old was dealt to the Mets from the Cincinnati Reds at the trade deadline in 2016. The average annual value of Bruce's deal is $13 million, which would have swallowed up almost the entire pool of money the Giants have left to add to their payroll this offseason.

After the trade, Bruce hit.248 with 7 HR and 26 RBI in 43 regular season games.

Other reports by GizPress

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