Bruce sits, for two games
Not only was Jay Bruce out of the lineup on Thursday, he’ll be missing from the starting lineup when the road trip moves to New York on Friday. Bruce is batting .209 and 0-for-his-last 12.
Manager Dusty Baker called Bruce into his office Thursday for a private, one-on-one meeting that lasted several minutes.
“I’m letting him clear his head, much like Jimmy Rollins over here and Magglio Ordonez with the Tigers, I thought I’d give him today and tomorrow to clear himself and study,” Baker said. “He’ll study our guys, who’s hitting and who’s not and why. He’ll study their guys like Chase Utley, Ryan Howard and different guys and see how they approach things and set up.”
Baker, who is an eternal optimist is trying make sure Bruce maintains his confidence which will be essential to climbing out of the hole.
“The big thing is the mindset and staying positive and just not getting too down,” Bruce said. “Mentally, sometimes it’s the toughest thing to keep your morale up. Confidence is a huge part of this game.”
Some people keep asking if Bruce should go to Triple-A and get his swing back. I’d be thinking that if he wasn’t do anything right at all on the field. But he’s still helping the team in other ways. His 10 outfield assists are tied for the Major League lead. His 18 homers lead the team. He’s also a smart guy and I believe he’ll find his way out of this. He’s not going to be a feast or famine type of hitter his whole career.
“I told him he didn’t get in it in a month and he won’t get out of it in a month,” Baker said. “It’s a slow steady process and you try to recall what your mindset was when you didn’t think anybody could get you out. You try to remove all doubt.”
Baker said he plans to change the rotation order after the All-Star break but the schedule remains in flux.
“We’re going to reset it but we haven’t decided exactly yet,” Baker said. “We don’t want anybody to be off for 10-12 days either.”
The Reds also signed RHP Kip Wells to a Minor League contract and assigned him to Triple-A Louisville. Wells was released by the Nationals on Monday and signed with the Reds organization on Tuesday.
Follow updates on Twitter at: