‘I’m proud of what has happened:’ Former Reds outfielder Jay Bruce retires from baseball

‘I’m proud of what has happened:’ Former Reds outfielder Jay Bruce retires from baseball
Our media partners at the Cincinnati Enquirer say Jay Bruce, the former Reds outfielder, announced his retirement from baseball Sunday. File photo

CINCINNATI (CINCINNATI ENQUIRER) -Jay Bruce, one of the best Cincinnati Reds hitters over the last 20 years, announced his retirement from baseball on Sunday.

Our media partners at the Cincinnati Enquirer say that Bruce played for the New York Yankees this season and made 39 plate appearances. Between 2008 and 2016, Bruce spent nine years with the Reds and ranks 27th in franchise history in hits, 16th in doubles and RBI and eighth in home runs.

“I’m proud of what has happened and what I’ve accomplished,” Bruce told reporters on Sunday. “I have no idea what’s next, but I know that I love the game of baseball.”

The Reds drafted Bruce in the first round of the 2005 MLB Draft, and he debuted in 2008 at 21 years old. Bruce finished fifth in the Rookie of the Year ballot that season, and he became a mainstay in the Reds lineup for nearly a decade.

He homered 233 times with Cincinnati, made three All-Star teams and finished 10th in MVP voting twice. In 2010, Bruce had a walk-off home run against the Houston Astros that clinched a playoff berth for the Reds.

Bruce called that moment the highlight of his career.

“The weirdest part about that is that I was 23 at the time and I thought stuff like that happened all the time,” Bruce said. “That was just part of it. To know that the single moment that I’m going to remember the most in my career was 10 or 11 years ago now is pretty crazy. Looking back, it makes me appreciate everything else more.”

In 2016, the Reds traded Bruce to the New York Mets for second baseman Dilson Herrera and left-hander Max Wotell. At the time of the deal, Bruce was tied for the team lead with 25 home runs and led the National League with 80 RBI.

Bruce played for five different teams over the next five seasons, culminating with the Yankees. He finishes his career with 319 total home runs and 951 RBI. He ranked in the top-10 among active players in both categories.

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