GOODYEAR, Ariz. — Reds manager Bryan Price talked about the possibilities in the outfield if Jay Bruce is traded.
José Peraza will be considered. Scott Schebler can left. Devin Mesoraco could be a consideration down the line.
But, right now, Bruce is the guy.
“At this point in time, I really like thinking about Jay in right field,” Price said. “If things happen to the roster. We’ve had to deal with injuries. Any team does — we have players who are here that will pick up wherever there’s a void.
“I don’t want to think of not having Jay," Price said. "For me, in my six-plus years the Reds, Jay is one of players I’ve enjoyed as much as anyone around.”
Bruce was reportedly nearly traded to Toronto in the three-way deal Monday night. Talks broke down, according to Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, and the deal is likely dead. Bruce has handle all this well.
“Awkward is not the word,” Bruce said. “I’m reading the same stuff you all are. I’m reading the stuff you write. It’s obvious what’s going on. You just have to wait and see. I’ve said from the beginning until I’m not a Red, I’m a Red. I’m here right now.”
Trade rumors have become part of the Reds’ routine as the rebuild.
“It’s our good fortune that we’ve got a real pro in Jay Bruce, who’s handling this stuff unbelievably well,” Price said. “Absolutely, it’s challenge. The trade deadline is challenging. The offseason is challenging as soon as names pop.
“Everything blows up last night. It doesn’t make things an easier. As I mentioned the other day, it’s where we are with the game. The guys, this generation, is getting conditioned to the fact that it’s lay of land now.
Bruce said he does not want to become a distraction.
“The one thing I don’t want to do is do this every single day,” he said. “It’s not the media’s fault. You all are trying to do a job. We’re in tough situation as it is with the team. We have to be focused on the task at hand. I don’t want this to become something every single day.
“The team doesn’t need the distraction. I’ll answer the questions. But I really don’t have any answers. For now, nothing’s happened.”
Bruce heard nothing from the Reds Monday night and has not talked to anyone Tuesday morning.
“I don’t think that’s them not telling me something,” Bruce said. “I just don’t think there’s much to report.”
This is not easy for Bruce. His wife, Hannah, arrived in Goodyear last night. They decided not to unpack in the wake of the rumors.
“There’s a lot of emotions,” Bruce said. “I tell myself all the time: Don’t listen. Don’t pay attention to rumors. But it’s hard. I’m human being. I pay attention to this stuff. It is what is. It hasn’t happened yet.”