Free agent OF/1B Jay Bruce has two multi-year offers, with another one "expected in the coming days," reports Jon Paul Morosi of MLB.com, who does not have specifics regarding which teams have extended the offers.
The Mets were still in contact with Bruce as of late-December, but had not yet made him an offer, Mike Puma of the NY Post reported at the time. Last week, Newsday's Marc Carig said on The 7 Line's Orange and Blue Thing podcast that Bruce returning to the Mets was unlikely, but not to rule anything out.
Bruce's agent said last month that his client has interest in the Giants, and that he would wait to see how things develop there before making a decision on where to sign. After acquiring Evan Longoria from the Rays, the Giants remain interested in signing Bruce, but may not be willing to offer more than three years, Buster Olney of ESPN recently reported.
Bruce, who had been seeking a five-year deal earlier this offseason, is now seeking a four-year deal, a source told Daily News reporter Kristie Ackert last month.
Like the Giants, the Mets -- who met with Bruce's agent during the Winter Meetings -- are reportedly only willing to offer Bruce a three-year deal.
In addition to the Giants and Mets, the Rockies, Blue Jays, and Mariners have been linked to Bruce, according to reports on MLB Trade Rumors.
In October, Mets officials told Puma that they believe Bruce is capable of being both an everyday right fielder and part-time or backup first baseman, which is specifically the type of versatile outfielder Sandy Alderson told reporters he is aiming to acquire this winter.
I've been saying since August that Bruce would prefer to sign with a team in California or Texas. Last month, his agent actually came right out and said Bruce would love to sign with the Giants, who have money to spend and a need for a corner outfielder that can also play first base. The Rangers are in the same situation. So, between those two teams, plus Toronto, Cleveland, and a few other quieter markets with teams likely to contend, it's hard to imagine Jay taking less to return to New York.
My hunch is Bruce's agent simply views the Mets as leverage. And, honestly, Alderson probably sees Bruce the same way. If for some reason they're both left with nothing but one another, maybe the Mets and Bruce reunite. But, until that happens, I still contend he's most likely to be on the Giants.