© 2008 MLB Advanced Media, L.P. All rights reserved.

12/24/08 10:00 AM EST

Bruce has fond memories of Christmas

Outfielder discusses holidays of his past and present

Reds outfielder Jay Bruce has plenty to be grateful for during this holiday season.

Bruce, 21, will always remember this year. He made his long-anticipated Major League debut, played alongside idol Ken Griffey Jr. and adjusted to life at the top of his profession.

All of that takes a backseat to what Bruce enjoys the most about the holidays -- his family in his hometown of Beaumont, Texas.

Holiday Q&A width=
ARI: Conor Jackson
ATL: Blaine Boyer
BAL: Jeremy Guthrie
BOS: M. Delcarmen
CHC: Kevin Gregg
CWS: John Danks
CIN: Jay Bruce
CLE: Ryan Garko
COL: Clint Barmes
DET: Nate Robertson
FLA: Josh Johnson
HOU: Chris Sampson
KC: Trey Hillman
LAA: Ron Roenicke
LAD: Andre Ethier
MIL: Seth McClung
MIN: Joe Nathan
NYM: Mike Pelfrey
NYY: Brian Bruney
OAK: J. Duchscherer
PHI: Jimmy Rollins
PIT: Frank Coonelly
SD: Chase Headley
SF: Sergio Romo
SEA: Don Wakamatsu
STL: John Roney
TB: Grant Balfour
TEX: Ian Kinsler
TOR: Rod Barajas
WAS: Steven Shell

Bruce recently discussed his holiday traditions during an interview with MLB.com.

MLB.com: Growing up, what was the biggest thing about the Bruce family Christmas?

Bruce: Oh man, Christmas morning. You get up and see what Santa brought you. That day, you get to eat with the family and have fun being a kid. You don't realize how much fun that stuff is until you don't really do it anymore. Santa doesn't bring me anything anymore.

MLB.com: When Santa was bringing you gifts, what was the best one he ever brought you?

Bruce: I've gotten a bike, a basketball goal, a shotgun. Santa was pretty good to me.

MLB.com: How many times during the 24 hour loop of a "A Christmas Story" do you think you'll be watching?

Bruce: I don't know. I would venture to say at least once.

MLB.com: Do you like giving or receiving gifts?

Bruce: Absolutely giving. It makes me feel really good to be able to make people happy and give them things they enjoy. The biggest thing for me is being with my family. It's what I'm looking forward to. Now, Christmas isn't about the gifts. It's about family and bringing everyone together.

MLB.com: Any plans this year?

Bruce: Just going back to Beaumont and hanging out with the family.

MLB.com: What's for dinner?

Bruce: It's very Thanksgiving-ish -- turkey, ham, dressing, vegetables. All the desserts. There is no starving back home, that's for sure. I'll have plenty to eat.

MLB.com: If you could put one gift under the collective Reds fans' holiday tree, what would it be?

Bruce: A World Series. You think they'd be all right with that?

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.