Mandatory Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports
We cannot discuss the Blue Jays’ best home run hitters without talking about one of the more prolific ball destroyers of the present day. Jose Bautista sits in 2nd place on the Blue Jays’ all time list with 243 round trippers. He holds the franchise record for home runs in a single season with 54. Seemingly out of nowhere, he has become one of the most dangerous hitters in baseball.
Toronto Blue Jays
Since he came over from the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2008, he seems to have discovered his home run stroke. It took some adjustments to his timing to unleash the full effect of those quick hands. But, with some work with manager, Cito Gaston, and hitting coach, Dwayne Murphy he was able to get that timing down. Since then, he’s been a force.
From 2010 through 2015, he has not hit any fewer than 27 homers. He’s hit 35 or more 4 times in 6 seasons. And, that is what is so remarkable about Bautista’s spot on this list: he’s done it in such a short time. And, he’s done it seemingly out of nowhere. His ISO had never been above .173 at the big league level. It now sits at .240 for his career.
The rapid turn around had some people crying foul and suggesting that he’d been taking some sort of performance enhancers in order to make such a jump with the bat. He has always denied this claim and has been tested umpteen times with never a positive result. Thankfully, those baseless accusations have died.
Instead, we get to enjoy the pure awesomeness of a Bautista blast. There really is nothing like his line drive home runs. He has his share of no doubters, too. But, when he shoots one over the wall in LF, the scoreboard lights up before the opposition even knows what hit them. Perhaps none of his home runs will be remembered more than his 7th inning shot in the 5th game of the 2015 ALDS. Of course, his blast in Game 6 of the following ALCS was equally impressive.
Despite being with the club for a relatively short time and coming out of nowhere with his power, Bautista has managed to leave quite the mark on Blue Jays record books. He sits in 2nd place all time and holds two of the more important home runs in club history.
Next: The Blue Jays' Greatest Home Run Hitter of All Time