After the Blue Jays played the Rays recently, Joe Maddon compared Jose Bautista to Barry Bonds, circa 2002. Despite the troublesome comparison, there are good reasons to think Bautista is 2011’s version of Bonds.
In 2010, Bautista hit 54 home runs after belting just 59 in the previous four seasons combined. And in case you thought Bautista would go the way of Brady Anderson and be a one-year power wonder, Bautista is back in 2011 with more. A lot more.
After hitting .260 with a .378 OBP and a .995 OPS in 2010, Bautista is hitting .370 with a .516 OBP and 1.365 OPS through 41 games in 2011. And he is on pace for 62 home runs.
Since the start of the 2010 season, Bautista has hit 70 home runs (below). That is the most in Major League Baseball, and 21 (42.9%) more than the next closest slugger. In fact, there are only 25 hitters in baseball that have even half of Bautista’s total.
Here are the top 26 home runs hitters since the start of the 2010 season…
Data via Baseball-Reference.com…through Sunday’s games.