Pop quiz: Bautista bombs

Heading into the Memorial Day weekend, Jose Bautista has 19 home runs. This is, as everyone knows, on top of the 54 blasts he hit last season, which itself followed a 10-homer outburst in September 2009. (And six of those were in his final eight games.)

To say Bautista has been hot the last year and a half would be a massive understatement. He’s been the sun, and anyone who dares gaze upon him will be blinded by his radiance. Icarus wouldn’t have dared put on his wings had Bautista been nearby.

But as good as he has been, how much longer can Bautista keep this up? Will he crack 50 long balls again this year? Will he become just the sixth player ever to go yard 60 times in a single season? Will he threaten Barry Bonds‘ one-year record of 73 big flies? (Can I think of any more synonyms for “home runs”?)

These aren’t rhetorical questions. We really want to know what you think. We’ll collect the votes, count ‘em up and post the results next week.

So, select a radio button (include a comment below if you like) and let the world know:

{exp:freeform:form form_name=”2011HR_Bautista”prevent_duplicate_on=”ip_address” return=”http://www.hardballtimes.com/main/forms/thanks/”}

How many home runs will Jose Bautista hit in 2011?

Less than 40. Dude has to cool off some time.
40-49. He’s legit and will keep raking, but let’s not go overboard.
50-59. Baseball’s best bopper is Bautista.
60-69. He’s on a historic run.
70-plus. Look out Barry and Big Mac, he’s comin’ for ya!

{/exp:freeform:form}

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Comments

  1. Jeff Self said...

    I say check his bat or blood. Look at his season stats year by year. Something is very fishy. If it walks like a duck, looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, its probably a duck.

  2. Greg Simons said...

    Jeff, does that make Roger Maris a duck, too?

    I’m as strong a supporter of finding and disciplining cheaters as anyone, but every MLB player gets tested for PEDs nowadays, as Manny Ramirez aptly demonstrated – twice! If Bautista is juicing, he’s been getting away with it for about 18 months now, so I seriously doubt he is. 

    I hate the fact that any outstanding performance these days is shrouded in suspicion.  Players do get better, they do figure things out, and they do make adjustments.  If a player – Bautista or anyone else – gets busted, throw the book at him.  Until then, let’s give him the benefit of the doubt.

  3. Lee D said...

    Jeff,

    The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the iniquities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men. Blessed is he who, in the name of charity and good will, shepherds the weak through the valley of darkness, for he is truly his brother’s keeper and the finder of lost children. And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who would attempt to poison and destroy My brothers. And you will know My name is the Lord when I lay My vengeance upon thee.

    Sincerely,
    Jose Bautista

  4. Cam said...

    The only thing that will slow Bautista down is an injury.  He’s in Barry territory right now.

    One of my favorite stats among many ridiculous options – Bautista currently ranks 2nd in the majors in May WAR.  He missed 5 games this month and his BABIP is .224, compared to the May leader Matt Joyce’s .424.  Even when he’s unlucky he’s the best player in the league.

  5. bucdaddy said...

    Hard as it is to believe, I’m buying the mirror/swing adjustment explanation, and think Jose’s for real (much to my consternation as a Pirates fan; why didn’t you listen to OUR coaches when they told you the same thing, you $%^*&%?).

    FWIW, the day he started his binge in 9/09 he was hitting .216 and might have been close to being out of baseball. Guess he was finally desperate enough to try anything.

    I’ll say he’ll settle in the low 50s again. They have to stop pitching to him SOMEtime.

  6. Renegade said...

    Jeff,
    so Bautista has a monopoly on an undetectable drug that turns you into Superman? If it talks like a troll, it is a troll.

  7. eric arvidson said...

    He made his adjustments, now the pitchers will make theirs. That’s baseball! He won’t break 40 this year…
    BTW – an “Icarus” reference on a baseball blog? Nice!

  8. Christian Lucero said...

    adjustments= still having that big leg kick he’s known for, but getting his foot down on time. he’s starting to figure out what made guys (A-rod, bonds, sheffield, sosa) successful with their respective “hitches” in their swing.

    if it sounds like an idiot, it’s probably ^Jeff

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