Tuesday, 26 February 2013

New Adventures of Old Jose

Stoeten took that in Dunedin. Cause sharing oxygen with his betters is how he rolls now.

One of the things I've noticed this spring about these new look Jays is how much I continue to admire Jose Bautista.

Imagine how your dream response to an ex or an old employer when you were asked about seeing them again. You'd want to combine grace (so you'd seem above it and better off) with just the right amount of snark to get a little dig in. I'd like to imagine that the dream response sounds a hell of a lot like this:

"As a person I like him. As a manager I like him. He never did anything bad or wrong to me. You can't blame somebody for having a desire to get to a certain place in his career.

"At least he said it and made it obvious and made it known to everybody. And he had a chance to pursue his dream. I would rather him be there doing that than be with us and wanting to be there.

"Yeah, I'll go say hi to him, talk to him, see what he's doing, see how's he feeling. Normal chit-chat. And then I'm going to try to kick his ass."

Also on Sunday, Bautista tweeted this:

Clearly, the man is on fire. 

Coming into the season, there are concerns. Bautista says the wrist is strong and feels good, but the kind of tendon sheath tear he had surgery on can be a tricky thing for power hitters. 

Mark DeRosa, who is currently serving as Brett Lawrie's new buddy, talked about how the same surgery didn't work for him. 

"I’m a tough guy to talk to," he says, "because I personally feel -- and not to make any excuses -- that it totally handicapped my entire career since I've done it. I’ve seen my power cut in half." 

Listening to the description of the swing that ended Bautista's season in July 2012:

“Maybe I had a little too much pine tar, or I held onto the bat for too long,” Bautista says now, seven months later. “But I felt a little pop, and a sharp pain.”  

And it becomes obvious just how fragile Bautista (and well, any of them) really are. 

With the emergence of Encarnacion as well as the various new and returning pieces, Bautista isn't quite the one man gang he once was. But John Gibbons argues that Bautista is the key that drives the entire offense:

"Look what he’s done the last few years. He’s a threat, in any ballpark. And home runs win. They're instant runs. You can be playing a tight game, and one swing of the bat from that guy, game's over. Or he's the kind of guy who, the other team's so careful with him, he draws a walk and now you've got that runner on base you need to get things going. … "

Despite all the new toys, this is still Bautista's team.

And whatever is going on in this picture, I get the sense there needs to be more of it. It's awesome. 

Here he is talking to John Kruk about the 2013 Jays. No mention of Kruk's hair in the '93 World Series. Which is a shame because I'd dearly like to hear a discussion about it. 

No comments:

Post a Comment