SAN DIEGO -- A few notes from the National League All-Star media availability at the Manchester Grand Hyatt in San Diego:
Bruce glad for chance to restore value after scuttled trade to Blue Jays
Reds outfielder Jay Bruce is one of the most likely players to be dealt before the deadline, as he was already included in one agreed-upon trade during spring training. That three-team deal between the Reds, Blue Jays and Angels fell apart, keeping Bruce with Cincinnati and fellow All-Star Michael Saunders with Toronto.
Bruce recalled the rumors surrounding him during spring training and said he believed with the Reds were satisfied with how things worked out.
“It was a really long Twitter feed of just over and over and over,” Bruce said. “I heard a lot of things that were supposed to happen, I heard some things that definitely happened, and I heard things that were supposed to happen and didn’t happen.”
“It was apparently a pretty complex deal that was going down and it ended up not having anything to do with Michael or myself,” Bruce said. “We’re both still with the teams we were, and he’s played great. He’s an All-Star, obviously. I think I’ve restored my value much more than at the time I was being dealt. Looking back, the Reds are probably fine with it not happening.”
Bruce has already been connected to the Nationals, Dodgers, Indians and Jays so far this summer as teams look for outfield help.
“It definitely will not surprise me if I am [traded],” he said. “There are no definites in this game until after a transaction is made. I consider myself a Red until I’m literally not playing in that jersey anymore. Last year, I was ‘traded’ and then, here I am, an All-Star for the Reds. It’s something I don’t ever assume, but you guys are reading and writing the same stuff that I’m reading. It’s a situation that the Reds are in where they have to look and see if they can better their organization. If they feel that they can, then they will.”
Bruce has a limited no-trade clause, but is willing to keep his options open if a deal with a contender comes together.
“I’m going to consider every situation,” he said. “At this point... you have a no-trade clause for a reason. I have to try and see what’s best for me and what’s best for my family. The Reds are going to try to do what’s best for them. I completely understand that. There’s not a whole lot of black and white in the game of baseball. There’s always a chance for something to happen.”
Bruce is one of the last veterans left in the Reds’ clubhouse, with Johnny Cueto, Mike Leake, Aroldis Chapman, Marlon Byrd and Todd Frazier among the players the team has dealt within the last year. Bruce admitted that the process of seeing most of his veteran teammates being traded has been difficult.
“I feel like I have a pretty good grasp on the business side of the game and understanding that it’s not personal,” Bruce said. “The quicker you can realize and internalize that it’s not personal, you’ll have a better time understanding why things happen. Last year, I remember with Cueto, it was difficult. For the fanbase, for him. It was a situation where it couldn’t work out between the organization and him. And it wasn’t because they didn’t want him, but they were in a position to get better as an organization. Look who we got, we got guys who are hopefully part of the future there for a long time. It’s part of it all and I don’t hold any hard feelings or grudges against anything that happens or doesn’t happen.”
Gonzalez denies wanting trade out of Colorado
Rockies slugger Carlos Gonzalez once again denied a report that he was interested in being traded out of Denver on Monday.
“That never happened,” Gonzalez said. “I know there was a writer that said we had a meeting about future trades and that I wanted out. That never happened. I feel like I’m not in a position to say things like that. I’m always trying to work and progress as a player. Just trying to do my best to help the team I’m playing for.”
Gonzalez added that he could see the Rockies making a deal, especially after the surprise deal of cornerstone Troy Tulowitzki to the Blue Jays last July.
“I wouldn’t be surprised because I feel like we’re all in the position in which we could either get traded or stay,” Gonzalez said. “Right now we’re at the All-Star Game, but tomorrow we don’t know where we’ll be. I’m just happy to have the opportunity to play in the big leagues, so as long as I have a uniform on and continue to reach my goals, that’s the only thing that I could ask for.”
Gonzalez was traded twice early during his pro career, but has been in the Rockies organization since 2009. He noted that his time in Denver is coming to an end even if he is not traded, as his contract expires after the 2017 season.
“I feel like I’ve been a Rockie since Day 1, since the last time I wore a different uniform was ten years ago,” Gonzalez said. “I’ve been dealt twice before, so if it happens in the future it won’t be unfamiliar to me. Obviously, everyone loves being established in one place. You don’t want to be moving around. There are a lot of things that play in. After this year, I have one more year left on my contract, so there will be some decisions to be made in the future. Right now, I’m just trying to concentrate on things I can control.”
Padres Myers, Pomeranz discuss deadline rumors
Both of the Padres’ hometown All-Stars, outfielder Wil Myers and lefty Drew Pomeranz, have been rumored as trade candidates as San Diego continues its rebuild. Team owner Peter Seidler recently told a reporter that Myers would not be dealt, but kept the door open for a Pomeranz deal.
Myers has not received a private assurance from the team on his future.
“I have not, personally,” Myers said when asked about being assured he is staying. “I’ve seen some articles come out that Ron Fowler said I’m not going to be traded. I have no other reason not to believe that. I’m not going to go out of my way and ask people if I’m being traded. I believe what I hear and that’s it.”
Pomeranz has already been linked to the Marlins and other clubs, and believes his future is up in the air.
“I don’t know what’s going on with that,” Pomeranz said. “I’ve been traded so many times that I’m always just sitting on Go for whatever happens.”
Pomeranz has already been dealt three times since 2011, from the Indians to the Rockies to the Athletics to the Padres. He said those experiences make it easier to deal with rumors.
“I think they prepare me a little bit,” Pomeranz said. “It’s been a little easier to deal with every time I’ve been traded. It made me realize I can’t worry about that kind of stuff.”
Brewers, Lucroy not discussing extension
Brewers catcher Jonathan Lucroy is a trade candidate this summer, though the club has expressed some interest in signing him to an extension. Despite this, Lucroy said Monday that no talks have occurred.
Lucroy is not ruling out the possibility of an extension before his contract runs out after the 2017 season.
“Keeping all your options open is the best thing for everybody,” Lucroy said. “I’m not burning any bridges or anything. I just think it’s best to not let any of that stuff get to you. All of it will take care of itself.”
Lucroy admitted to checking rumor sites throughout the season, but said that his focus is usually not on himself. Despite the rumors involving him, he said his focus is on playing, not name-searching.
“I do, I keep up on...not my stuff, but the current stuff with everyone that’s going on,” Lucroy said about reading rumors. “I’ll go online and see what’s going on. I figure if there’s something going on, I’ll know about it before the rumor sites do.”
“I think placing expectations on it would be a mistake,” Lucroy said. “It’s just better...I know its cliché and boring, but I’m not going to worry about that. It takes away from my playing, my performance and the team. It’s a distraction and I try not to focus on all that. It would be detrimental to everybody, for myself especially.”