NEW YORK -- With right fielder Jay Bruce expected to be out for a while with the fractured right wrist he suffered on Saturday, the Reds will have to spend the All-Star break, and beyond, determining how to move forward. Could Bruce's injury make the need to add another bat through a trade even more pressing? "It depends," Reds manager Dusty Baker said on Sunday. "Everybody knows you're in need and they want to get the better of the deal. It's harder to trade now than ever before because most teams want your young players. [General manager] Walt [Jocketty] has already been on the phone already. We'll see."
Jocketty was not with the Reds on Sunday because he was flying to St. Louis for the All-Star Game festivities. On Sunday against the Mets, the Reds started Chris Dickerson in right field in Bruce's place. Other corner outfielders also include Laynce Nix and Jonny Gomes. Utility player Jerry Hairston Jr. started the season in a left-field platoon but has mostly played shortstop and third base because of injuries in the infield. Baker said the Reds would definitely make some roster adjustments coming out of the All-Star break since the club is currently carrying 13 pitchers. A position player will be called up -- but who? It appeared unlikely that either of the top outfield prospects at Triple-A Louisville -- Drew Stubbs and Chris Heisey -- would get promoted. Stubbs, the Reds' 2006 first-round Draft pick, entered Sunday batting .279 with two home runs and 25 RBIs for the Bats. "What does that equate to here?" Baker said. "He's still trying to figure out his stroke. Let's not rush these guys like we did with a whole bunch of guys. If they're going to be here, you want them to play every day." Recently promoted from Double-A Carolina, Heisey is batting .365 with three homers and 13 RBIs in 14 games for Louisville. He batted .347 with 13 homers and 40 RBIs at Carolina. "I was really impressed with Heisey in the spring, but he just got to Triple-A," Baker said. "I've seen guys have a couple of good weeks or months and bam. [Adam] Rosales was hitting .390 when he got here. Last year, Jay Bruce was hitting .400 when he got up here. I've seen Corey Patterson with the Cubs get up here in a hurry. Let's let them play and tear it up for a while. "Let's let these kids play and develop. All we see is their batting averages. All we see is hitting. We don't see the total game if you want to win in the big leagues. There is baserunning, throwing, getting signs and fundamental stuff. If they're going to make mistakes, let them make them there."
Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.