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Thread: Jay Bruce offseason info

  1. #1
    Puffy's Daddy Red Leader's Avatar
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    Jay Bruce offseason info

    Just wanted to pass this info along.

    I was listening to the Dayton Dragon's Locker Room show (it's similar to the Red's Hot Stove Report that Chip always does recaps of). Anyway, the Dragons have a similar show on local radio every Wednesday and yesterday they spoke with Jay Bruce.

    First of all, let me tell you, Jay Bruce is one of the nicest and most humble ball players I've ever heard. Just a great guy that is almost impossible to not like. Anyway among the key things I heard from him was that he said that he has been working out in Texas for a little more than 7-8 weeks now and said that he works out with Adam Dunn almost everyday. He said that lifting with Adam Dunn is sometimes difficult to do because Adam is so naturally strong that its almost intimidating for him to do it. Let me just say that Jay Bruce is not a little kid or anything. I think he's like 6'3", 215 or so. He said that Adam can just flat out make people look stupid sometimes in the weight room. He's just naturally strong and there's no other way to say it. "Some people are just born strong, and he, obviously, is just one of those people," Bruce said. The second thing that jumped out to me was this: The interviewer asked Bruce if he was happy with his stats last year. Bruce said that he doesn't have number goals for seasons, per se, but he has levels that he'd like to get to throughout the season (he didn't define them). He said that overall he was fine with the numbers he had, but two areas he thought he needed improvement were his BB/K rate and his avg vs LHP's. He said that he didn't think his BB/K rate from last year was acceptable. (He finished the season with 106K / 44BB). He said that he shouldn't be striking out 106 times a year and he should be more patient and walk more. He said that was one stat he was looking to improve in 2007 and would consciously work on. He said that if he made that stat better, and more to his own liking, he thought the rest of his stats would get better as a result. He said that he started last season batting about .100 vs LHP's through the first month of the season. He ended the season with a .236 avg vs LHP's. He said that he improved quite a bit in the second half, and that was something he was happy about, but said that he's going to try and do better from beginning to end this season. He thought one of the problems with that was that he didn't face much LHP in high school. He said that facing LHP's was somewhat of a new experience for him and he kind of psyched himself out a little at the beginning of the season, telling himself he couldn't be successful because of his inexperience. He said that at one point in the season he was talking to Alonzo Powell (Dayton's hitting instructor) and told him that he was just going to take the same approach to hitting LHP's that he did in facing RHP's. He said from then on, he started hitting LHP's a little better and that mindset of "I can't hit well vs LHP's" kind of started to disappear and as a result the numbers started to look better. He said that one of his goals this year was to hit RHP's and LHP's at about the same clip.

    The interviewer also told him that Dayton was planning on having a Jay Bruce bobblehead in 2007 and asked him about that. He said that some players don't like their bobbleheads because they say it doesn't look like them. Jay said "How cool is that? I'm going to have a bobblehead!" He just couldn't calm down after that. He said that he didn't care if it looked like him or not, if it had his name on it, he'll know that the intention was to make a bobblehead of him and that's all that matters. He really was excited about the bobblehead and said that it was one of the coolest things he could imagine.

    They asked him about his timetable, saying they thought he'd be up full time in 2009 and wanted to know what the Red's had told him. Jay said "I wish I was in Cincinnati now. I wish I could play on the big league team this season. Obviously, that's not going to happen, but that's what I'd like. As far as a timetable? it depends on who you listen to...I've heard several different things from different people. I'm just going to go out and play as hard as I can. The Reds have taken care of me so far, so I'm just going to play hard and leave it up to them. If I do what I'm capable of, that stuff will take care of itself and I'll make it there." He said that he's enjoyed his offseason, but as soon as Christmas was over he was kind of getting ancy to get to Spring Training and get back to playing ball.


    All of the above was just a recap, there was other stuff they covered, but I really enjoyed the interview. As I said, Jay was one of the nicest, most humble players I've ever heard interviewed and I don't see any reason why anyone would NOT pull for him to succeed.
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  3. #2
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    Re: Jay Bruce offseason info

    Great summary, thanks RL.

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    Stat Wanker Hodiernus RedsManRick's Avatar
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    Re: Jay Bruce offseason info

    Sounds like the kid really has his head on straight. It's exciting to think he could be just 2 years away.
    Games are won on run differential -- scoring more than your opponent. Runs are runs, scored or prevented they all count the same. Worry about scoring more and allowing fewer, not which positions contribute to which side of the equation or how "consistent" you are at your current level of performance.

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    The Boss dougdirt's Avatar
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    Re: Jay Bruce offseason info

    Jay really is a stand up guy. Everything I have ever read about him, or seen of him in person does nothing but reaffirm that fact.

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    Re: Jay Bruce offseason info

    He said that overall he was fine with the numbers he had, but two areas he thought he needed improvement were his BB/K rate and his avg vs LHP's. He said that he didn't think his BB/K rate from last year was acceptable. (He finished the season with 106K / 44BB). He said that he shouldn't be striking out 106 times a year and he should be more patient and walk more. He said that was one stat he was looking to improve in 2007 and would consciously work on. He said that if he made that stat better, and more to his own liking, he thought the rest of his stats would get better as a result.
    That really caught my eye. His K/BB rate (especially walk rate) wasn't as good as I expected it to be last year. It's great to hear he's not gonna pull a Tony Womack and say, "look at my .291 average" or "I really make things happen out there no matter what the stats say." The fact that he has a relatively educated idea about what to do to become a better offensive player is refreshing.

    That's sweet that he's lifting with Dunn. His power's gonna explode if he bulks up and keeps killing the ball like he did last year.

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    Stat Wanker Hodiernus RedsManRick's Avatar
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    Re: Jay Bruce offseason info

    Quote Originally Posted by Superdude View Post
    That really caught my eye. His K/BB rate (especially walk rate) wasn't as good as I expected it to be last year. It's great to hear he's not gonna pull a Tony Womack and say, "look at my .291 average" or "I really make things happen out there no matter what the stats say." The fact that he has a relatively educated idea about what to do to become a better offensive player is refreshing.

    That's sweet that he's lifting with Dunn. His power's gonna explode if he bulks up and keeps killing the ball like he did last year.
    Power = bat speed, not strength in and of itself. Griffey isn't a "power" guy and he's done fine for himself. Eric Davis had insane bat speed because of his wrists, not biceps. Being able to out bench anybody in the room doesn't make you a power hitter. Sure, you can force the bat through the zone and/or muscle the ball out, which Dunn often does, but it isn't necessary to be ripped to hit for power.

    In fact, one could argue that Dunn is overly concerned about strength and that it's hurting his agility on the field and nimbleness with the bat in terms of contact. It's speculation, but still...
    Last edited by RedsManRick; 01-18-2007 at 04:49 PM.
    Games are won on run differential -- scoring more than your opponent. Runs are runs, scored or prevented they all count the same. Worry about scoring more and allowing fewer, not which positions contribute to which side of the equation or how "consistent" you are at your current level of performance.

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    Puffy's Daddy Red Leader's Avatar
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    Re: Jay Bruce offseason info

    You are correct, RedsManRick.

    I wasn't really looking at it like "wow, Jay Bruce is lifting with Adam Dunn...he's going to get huge." I was more looking at it like 1) Jay Bruce started lifting 7-8 weeks ago, so he's not just sitting on his butt in the offseason and doing nothing. He's really serious about lifting and staying in shape or getting into better shape, and 2) that's cool that he has Adam Dunn to talk to, to pick his brain, to ask questions to, to really be a role model for him. Both are good athletes, both are from Texas, and both started playing professionally out of H.S. I'm sure there's a lot Adam can share with Jay that will help him along.

    Besides, as I said above, it's not like Jay Bruce is Ryan Freel. Bruce is 6'3" and at least 215 lbs. That's not small. I mean, compared to Dunn at 6'6" and 265 it is, but not compared to the average major leaguer.



    I also forgot to add in the original post that Jay Bruce said that right now he's more comfortable playing CF. He said that he did play RF some last year and he truly believes that with more experiece he could be a real good RFer, but right now he said that he feels more comfortable in CF because of the experience he has there. He said that he'd be willing to play either position in the big leagues. He didn't say what the Reds had told him they wanted him to play.
    'When I'm not longer rapping, I want to open up an ice cream parlor and call myself Scoop Dogg.'
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    Re: Jay Bruce offseason info

    I hope this means Dunn plans on sticking with the Reds after his contract is up.

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    Re: Jay Bruce offseason info

    Quote Originally Posted by Red Leader View Post
    I also forgot to add in the original post that Jay Bruce said that right now he's more comfortable playing CF. He said that he did play RF some last year and he truly believes that with more experiece he could be a real good RFer, but right now he said that he feels more comfortable in CF because of the experience he has there. He said that he'd be willing to play either position in the big leagues. He didn't say what the Reds had told him they wanted him to play.
    I asked Bruce at Redsfest essentially the same thing, as in where in the outfield he'd prefer to play. He laughed and said he'd play wherever he was told to play if it meant he was playing in the big leagues. He did also tell me the same thing that he said on the radio show, which is that he feels much more comfortable in center field right now since he's played there for most of his life. If the Reds wanted him to play a corner spot, he said he'd do whatever he had to do to make sure he'd excel there.

    He was an exceptionally pleasant guy to talk to, and he really sounds like he's working his tail off to be the best player he can possibly be. He's an incredible athlete, and he has immense talent. I'm glad he's on our side.
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    So Long Uncle Joe BoydsOfSummer's Avatar
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    Re: Jay Bruce offseason info

    Hope he doesn't bulk his way out of CF type ability on defense. He's going to be a RF most likely, but nothing wrong with keeping CF type range.
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    Stat Wanker Hodiernus RedsManRick's Avatar
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    Re: Jay Bruce offseason info

    It sounds more and more like the Larry Walker comparisons are legit. Walker was a great RF across the board in the first half of his career. I'd gladly take a 35 HR, 15 SB guy in RF right about now...
    Games are won on run differential -- scoring more than your opponent. Runs are runs, scored or prevented they all count the same. Worry about scoring more and allowing fewer, not which positions contribute to which side of the equation or how "consistent" you are at your current level of performance.

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    Re: Jay Bruce offseason info

    Good to hear he's working out with Dunner. It would be quite funny in a few years if the lineup consists of:
    LF Dunn
    CF Stubbs
    RF Bruce
    SP Bailey

    The Texas Reds

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    Re: Jay Bruce offseason info

    Quote Originally Posted by HBP View Post
    Good to hear he's working out with Dunner. It would be quite funny in a few years if the lineup consists of:
    LF Dunn
    CF Stubbs
    RF Bruce
    SP Bailey

    The Texas Reds
    Yeah, I have a feeling the top two won't be in this org in a couple years.

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    Re: Jay Bruce offseason info

    muscling up sure seemed to help Barroid.

    you are right though, batspeed is a major component.

    One has to imagine however, that a major-leaguer and a top 10 prospect realize that and are incoroprating some level of flexiblity and agility training into their regimine.


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