Jay Bruce wanted a shot at redemption with the Mets, but said he completely understands the trade sending him to the Mariners that became official Monday.
“I know they wanted to make a splash and shore up the bullpen and obviously they did that with getting the closer from Seattle,” Bruce told The Post, referring to reliever Edwin Diaz. “And Robbie Cano obviously has a track record. I think [general manager] Brodie Van Wagenen is going to come in and really try to make his mark and do what he thinks is necessary in order to point the team in the right direction. I wish everybody there the best.”
Bruce joined Anthony Swarzak and prospects Jarred Kelenic and Justin Dunn, in addition to reliever Gerson Bautista, in heading to the Mariners for Cano and Diaz. The 31-year-old Bruce has two years and $28 million remaining on his contract after a disappointing 2018 season in which he was limited by injuries and played 94 games, slashing .223/.310/.370 with nine homers and 37 RBIs.
The trade is Bruce’s second from the Mets; in 2017 he was dealt to the Indians for minor league reliever Ryder Ryan. The Mets had acquired Bruce from the Reds at the 2016 trade deadline.
“Honestly, it’s just another trade now,” Bruce said when asked about getting dealt by the Mets for a second time. “The third trade doesn’t hold quite the shock as the first couple do.”
Bruce said he had multiple dealings with Van Wagenen before his latest trade was finalized and appreciated the new GM’s forthrightness.
“He was transparent and truthful and honest the whole time I talked to him,” Bruce said. “That is something for me being in this game a long time, that is something I really appreciate and value from someone that is in the front office, because they don’t have to do that. That is something that is not imperative and doesn’t always happen. Keeping me in the loop and that doesn’t happen very often. I wished him all the best. I have a lot of people that I grew close to there.”
Bruce said the Mariners have told him he will be the club’s everyday left fielder.
“If I am on the field playing and healthy, then performance is not an issue,” Bruce said. “I just hope people in New York remember me as a guy who wanted to play and play well and not a lot of frills. I was honest and I was truthful and tried not to cause too much commotion, one way or another.”
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