What does trade for Jay Bruce mean for Phillies chances to win National League East?

Jay Bruce
Jay Bruce right fielder for the New York Mets at Chase Field in Phoenix Arizona USA June 17,2018. Keeton Gales
  • Monday, June 3:  Philadelphia Phillies vs. San Diego Padres, 10:10 p.m.
  • Philadelphia -140; San Diego +122. Over/Under 7.5 Odds provided by Fan Duel

The Philadelphia Phillies made the first, of what should become a flurry of Major League Baseball trades over the next two months, when they acquired power-hitting outfielder Jay Bruce from the Seattle Mariners for a minor league prospect and cash this weekend.

What does this trade mean for the Phillies and the balance of power in both the National League and the National League East?

Going into the first week of June, the Phillies, at 33-26, were in first place in the NL East, but just one game of the Atlanta Braves. The Phillies were on a four-game losing streak and were swept three games by the Los Angeles Dodgers before the trade.

The team began a three-game series in San Diego against the Padres, Monday night.

The odds on the Phillies winning the World Series, which were 20-1 at the start of the season, stayed firm at 10-1, the fifth best odds in the league.

Bruce, who was once a three-time All-Star with the Cincinnati Reds almost a decade ago, has not been traded four times in less than three years. Seattle acquired him this past offseason from the New York Mets.

In his short stay with the Mariners, the 32-year old Bruce batted just .212 with an on-base percentage of .283, both very low. He did, however, hit 14 home runs and that’s what intrigued the Phillies. Going to a home run friendly stadium in Philadelphia’s Citizens Bank Park  should only help those power numbers.

Philadelphia also needed another left-handed bat in their lineup and Bruce provides that as well. Only Brice Harper and Cesar Hernandez, who is a switch-hitter, bat left handed for the Phillies.  

With Harper the every day right fielder for the team, Buce will likely be asked to play left field with his new team, a position he seldom played in either Cincinnati, New York or Seattle.

Bruce will likely replace Odubel Herrera, who has been suspended from the team after a domestic violence allegation in Atlantic City last week.

Jay Bruce
Jay Bruce right fielder for the New York Mets at Chase Field in Phoenix Arizona USA June 17,2018. Keeton Gales

Photo by Keeton Gales (ShutterStock)

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