Entering 2016, Jose Bautista had averaged 622 plate appearance over his previous three seasons. However, the two-time Hank Aaron Award-winner logged just 517 in last year's injury-plagued campaign that included two DL stints. The timing couldn't have been worse, as Bautista was in a contract year. When the three-time Silver Slugger did play, the results fell way short of what's become expected of him. Bautista posted his second-lowest batting average (.234) since his first full season in 2006 with Pittsburgh. His .818 OPS and 19.9 percent strikeout rate were his worst marks since 2009, his first year in Toronto. Throughout his career, Bautista's power numbers have been significantly better at home, in the hitter-friendly Rogers Centre, than on the road. This important note bodes well for the veteran now that he resigned with the Blue Jays, as he looks to be in line for a prominent role in their potent offense as long as he remains healthy.
Bautista (back) is in the Blue Jays' Grapefruit League lineup Friday hitting second, Shi Davidi of Sportsnet reports. The 36-year-old recently said he wasn't concerned with the lower-back issue that forced him to miss the World Baseball Classic semifinals contest for the Dominican Republic. Luckily, Toronto had Thursday off, so Bautista received a welcomed rest, either way. After the brief break, the 2017 fantasy rebound candidate will look to get some hacks in before the season starts in about a week.
Bautista (back) went to manager John Gibbons and requested to be scratched from Wednesday's Grapefruit League lineup, but the slugger claimed it had nothing to do with an injury, Rob Longley of the Toronto Sun reports. Bautista said he's not concerned about the stiff lower-back ailment that kept him out of the Dominican Republic's final game of the WBC. With the Jays not in action Thursday, it's reasonable to believe that the 36-year-old figured he could benefit from missing Wednesday's game to pack a couple more days of rest under his belt. Assuming all is well with his back, Bautista will be in the lineup on Friday against the Red Sox.
Bautista (back) was scratched from Wednesday's lineup after previously being listed as the Jays' DH, Arden Zwelling of Sportsnet reports. No reason has been offered for the change just yet, but with Bautista slowed by back stiffness during the World Baseball Classic over the weekend, it's easy to wonder if he's still not quite 100 percent recovered from that ailment.
Bautista (back) is expected to rejoin the Jays' lineup Wednesday after missing one game during the World Baseball Classic due to back stiffness, the Toronto Star reports. Jays manager John Gibbons downplayed the ailment when discussing Bautista on Tuesday, the day the veteran outfielder returned to camp after his time away for the tournament. Although he remains a risk in the batting average department, Bautista has the potential to deliver significant power at a discounted price this draft season.
Bautista is not in the lineup for Team Dominican Republic in Saturday's game against Team USA due to back stiffness, Marly Rivera of ESPN reports. Bautista, who will be available off the bench, was replaced in the starting lineup by the Pirates' Gregory Polanco.