The Yankees have just signed outfielder Jay Bruce to a minor league deal. Last year Bruce played with the Philadelphia Phillies and hit only .198 with 6 home runs in 32 games. Bruce is 33 years old and has seen better days in the major leagues. He had some good years with the Reds and Mets. In 2013 he totaled 30 home runs and 109 RBIs. In 2016 between the Reds and the Mets he had 33 homers and 99 RBIs.
Adding Bruce could be an interesting decision by the Yankees because he could be a lefty power bat off the bench. He could fill in and play right field on the days the Yankees rest Aaron Judge or for other injured players the Yankees will most likely use him as a designated hitter. The Yankees could use another lefty hitter other than Aaron Hicks because as of now the Yankees have not resigned Brett Gardner. Either way, he could be helpful as a pinch hitter with a right-handed pitcher on the mound. He is a left-handed hitter with a dead pull swing which could benefit his power stroke at Yankee Stadium because of his short right-field porch.
The question now is how many more moves does Brian Cashman have planned this offseason. Are the Yankees moving on from veteran outfielder Brett Gardner? The Jay Bruce deal shouldn’t take the Yankees out of a reunion with Gardner since it is a minor league deal. Normally minor league deals come at a cheap price. Are the Yankees still seeing who is available in the bullpen market? The Yankees could be still open for a trade to maneuver the 40 man roster. It was an unexpected deal by the Yankees to acquire Bruce but could be an underrated move this offseason.