For two years, Jay Bruce has heard rumblings of a trade. On Monday at the deadline, it finally became reality. However, there was some drama again.
Bruce was traded to the Mets for Dilson Herrera and Max Wotell, the Reds have confirmed.
Herrera is the star of the return for the Reds. He was rated as one of the Mets’ top prospects until he lost his big league rookie status. In 149 Major League at bats between 2014 and ’15, Herrera hit .215 with six home runs.
He has made some noise in the Minor League levels, where he has hit .299 with a .831 OPS in six minor league seasons. Herrera is also just 22-years-old, and seen a good deal of big league time.
Herrera appears to be the Reds’ second baseman of the future, and an above average fielder. He also has some projectable power at the plate and could make a nice team with Jose Peraza in the middle infield.
Wotell was originally a third round pick in 2015 by the Mets. That season, he posted a 2.53 ERA in nine games. In 2016, Wotell returned to the Rookie League levels for the Mets organization and posted a 3.94 ERA prior to the trade.
He struggled with command in 2015 after being drafted, but improved some in 2016. However, he still posted a 3.6 BB/9 total. He is a high strikeout pitcher, with a 10.5 K/9 Minor League total.
Wotell works with a low-90s fastball, a sharp-breaking curve, and a changeup. He also possesses a deceiving delivery that has the ability to throw hitters off, but also could attribute to some of his command issues.
Wotell will likely start in either Billings or Dayton.
Bruce has been one of the top power hitters in the game since his arrival to Cincinnati in 2008. In that short time, Bruce has hit 233 home runs with the Reds. He has only had one season under 20 and three seasons over 30 homers and is a three-time All-Star.
Bruce is also a strong gap hitter, as he has three seasons of at least 25 doubles, including 43 in 2013. Bruce also has a well-known strong arm in right, as he has compiled 85 assists in nine seasons.
The former first round pick Bruce took only three minor league seasons to make it to the big leagues and just recently turned 29 years old.
It was originally announced that the Reds were going to receive Brandon Nimmo and two lower level minor leaguers in the deal, who had not been identified. For the second straight trade, the deal was then threatened by a physical that involved questions.
It was also initially reported that the Mets may also want a bullpen arm to sweeten the deal to the Reds, but that did not come to fruition.
Since Zack Cozart was not traded, the question comes into play where Herrera and Peraza fit in the rebuild in 2016. Peraza will still see time in left field, but neither will see much time in the natural position.