Jay Bruce brought a hot bat with him Monday as he made his first return to Cincinnati since being traded by the Reds to the Mets on August 1. Bruce had eight hits in his last 19 at bats with two home runs over his last five games, including a two-run shot off former Red Mat Latos in New York’s 5-1 win at Washington on Sunday night.
“It’ll be exciting to see him,” said Cozart, who was moved at Bruce’s request to the outfielder’s two-cubicle Great American Ball Park corner after the trade. “It’ll be weird seeing him in a Mets uniform, but I was happy to see him hit that home run off of Latos. It’ll be bittersweet.”
Mets manager Terry Collins wasn’t concerned about Bruce pressing while playing against his former team in his former home ballpark.
“The closer he got to Cincinnati, the hotter he got,” Collins pointed out, adding with a smile, “I expect him to go next door and get the rest of his bats.
“If anybody is going to be comfortable here, it’s him.”
Bruce and his wife Hannah were on the field before the game for his contributions on the field and their’s to the community off the field.
“The recognition on the field was special, but not surprising,” he said after going 0-for-4 with two strikeouts. “That’s the way the Reds have treated me and handled me since I got here. This whole day was kind of a blur.”