Jay Bruce is the most frustrating fantasy player to own in baseball. The highs are off the chart and the lows are long and painful. That said, Bruce’s annual production matches that on the back of his baseball card. Recently, Bruce has been struggling through one of those prolonged slumps that he puts himself in every year, but on Tuesday night he played the role of a hero against the Mets. With no outs and two runners on during a scoreless affair in the ninth inning, Bruce took reliever Josh Edgin deep for a three-run walk-off home run, his 23rd of the season, to clinch a 3-0 victory. Bruce also had a double in the second inning and finished 2 for 5 with three RBI. He has been struggling quite a bit lately, hitting .100 (2 for 20), prior to his game-winning homer against the Mets. He now has driven in five runs with two homers in the past two games for the Reds. Bruce has yet to have the crazy hot streak in 2012 that we have season in past seasons. Maybe, just maybe, we are seeing the beginning of one of those streaks right now.
In a surprise move last Thursday, the Baltimore Orioles called up Manny Machado to take over most of the time at third base while Wilson Betemit and Mark Reynolds split time at first base. Machado had an awesome four-game series against Kansas City to begin his career. He got a hit in all four games as he went 6 for 16 with five runs scored, a double, triple and three homers to go with seven RBI. I wasn’t completely convinced Machado was ready to see full time action with his .266 batting average with Double-A Bowie and his high strikeout rate.