Posted by: Jeremy | September 17, 2010

King Jose stands alone


Best beard, biggest ears and most prolific single-season home run hitter in team history

Step aside, George Bell, and kiss Jose Bautista’s purple ass while you’re at it. After tying Bell’s team record for home runs Wednesday night in Baltimore, Bautista claimed sole spot atop the Jays’ list with his 48th tonight in Boston, where Toronto picked up an 11-9 win over the Red Sox in the opener of a three-game set. Bautista popped a two-run shot over the Green Monster off reliever Michael Bowden with none out in the sixth, giving the Jays a 10-2 lead that they came dangerously close to blowing.

The homer was Toronto’s only of the night, but 16 other hits, including eight and seven runs off Boston starter John Lackey, were more than enough damage in this one. Yunel Escobar had four singles for his fifth multi-hit game in his last seven, Adam Lind had two doubles, a single and three RBIs and Fred Lewis had three knocks of his own. Lyle Overbay also snapped a 1-for-11 funk with two doubles and two RBIs, picking up right where he left off when he rocked Boston for nine RBIs in a series at Fenway last month.

Brett Cecil was far from spectacular for the second straight start, coughing up five runs on seven hits over six innings, but it was enough to win and improve to 13-7. After giving up a pair on a homer to Victor Martinez in the first, Cecil settled in, but four hits and three Red Sox runs in the sixth did its part to mash up his final line.

Boston tacked on two more on Martinez’s second homer of the game off Jesse Carlson in the eighth, and another pair crossed on three hits off Scotty Downs in the ninth. After a Daniel Nava double made it 11-9 and brought the tying run to the plate in Martinez, the incomparable Kevin Gregg was called on and got an infield pop-up to end it. That’s 32 saves for the big fella, if you’ll believe that.

The win — just the fifth in 16 games against Boston this year — comes after a three-game sweep at the hands of the Orioles and bumps the Jays back to 74-73. Ricky Romero (12-9, 3.72) will look to overcome his fear of facing the Red Sox in the middle game tomorrow, when he’s matched up against 2003 World Series hero and current washout Josh Beckett (5-4, 5.83).

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Responses

  1. Yay! Now the Jays can really blow it when they sign Bautista to a 10 year 200 million dollar contract and he loses all his power, in the slap of a finger.

    –It’s Greg’s 32 save (that’s great), in what??? 64 tries… :).

  2. Hey, really nice blog you got over here! Jose Bautista’s season has been absolutely magical and it has made watching the Jays this season such a treat. I never would in a million years have thought that Jose Bautista of all people would be the player to have the surprise year for the Jays. It’s going to be difficult for the Jays to decide what to do with him next year considering he keeps jacking out the homers. hey, you think you could also check out my blog cuz I really wanna hear what you think. http://chrisross91.wordpress.com/2010/09/18/what-to-do-with-jose-bautista/

  3. I mentioned it over on your blog, and I’ll say it here again: At 29 and with everything he’s done this year, Bautista has to be a part of the Jays’ plans if they wanna make a push over the next couple years.

    It’s been great watching the show he’s put on thus far — aside from the homers, he’s been great defensively. Last weekend against Tampa Bay, he charged a grounder while playing third and fired a strike to the plate to nail a runner trying to score, and I couldn’t help but think he’d never try that last season. He’s just turned into such a heady player — at times it’s looked like he can do no wrong.

  4. @Anonymous: You’ll find it hard to believe (as do I), that Gregg’s actually 32 of 37 in save situations this year. That doesn’t take into account games he’s come into tied and let get away, though.

  5. I dont know why it keeps marking me down as anonymous, but those comments are from me.


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