Washington Nationals: Is Bryce Harper The Best Right Fielder In NL East?
3. Jay Bruce (NYM)
2016 stats: .250/.309/.556, 33 home runs, 99 RBI’s, 74 runs in 147 games
In 2016, Jay Bruce had more home runs than any other right field in the game of baseball. However, once he got traded from the Reds to the Mets at the deadline, his production dropped drastically.
With the Mets, Bruce hit .213 with eight home runs and 19 RBI. Six of those home runs ended up occurring in the month of September. Even from his time with the Reds, Bruce has always been a power hitter. He has hit 30+ home runs in four of the last six seasons and has made the All-Star team three times.
The home run production is great, but Bruce did also strike out 122 times last season. In fact, there are only two other right fielder in the NL who struck out more than him last year (Carlos Gonzalez and Giancarlo Stanton). This stat is courtesy of MLB.com.
Bruce’s production defensively isn’t great either. Last season, his -11 runs saved (according to Fangraphs) was the lowest of any right fielder in the National League.
The Mets chose to pick up Bruce’s $13 million option for this season and they haven’t found a way to trade him. That takes a spot away from Michael Conforto, who didn’t have a great second season in the big leagues.
Bruce, who will turn 30 in April, will be looking to bounce back with the Mets in 2017. One thing’s for sure, I could’ve put Bruce lower on this list, but his ability and consistency to hit the long ball keeps him at number three.