By now, you’d think opposing pitchers would’ve learned it’s not a good idea to make Jose Bautista angry. If last night’s game against the Baltimore Orioles was any indication, they haven’t.
Give full credit to Jose Bautista in this situation; with tensions running high, it would be very easy for Bautista to let his emotions get the best of him and start over-swinging or over-throwing.
But instead, if Bautista is thrown at, it’s almost as if he gains a Matrix bullet time superpower and uses that to his advantage. Opposing pitchers continue to throw at Jose Bautista and he simply channels that anger into home run power and makes them pay.
If anything, this only makes Bautista stronger.
It’s not the first time this has happened either. I can recall at least five times in which Jose Bautista has either been hit by a pitch, thrown at, or his teammates were hit with a pitch, and he retaliated by hitting a home run.
Thus, a brief history below of Jose Bautista’s angriest home runs.
August 23rd, 2010 – vs New York Yankees
The original and arguably still the best. This might just be the very moment where Jose Bautista solidified his place as my favourite Blue Jay.
After being thrown at by Ivan Nova prior in the game, Jose Bautista teed off on this pitch from David Robertson. And it also helped that Bautista’s home runs would eventually provide all the offense the Blue Jays would need to secure the victory.
August 24th, 2011 – vs Kansas City Royals
In this game, Luke Hochevar hit Yunel Escobar with a pitch in the fifth inning. Also during this at bat, Hochevar threw another pitch inside to Bautista. And then a few balls later, Jose exacted his revenge and finished it off with an epic stare down towards Hochevar.
June 22nd, 2013 – vs Baltimore Orioles
Want to know where the whole Jose Bautista/Darren O’Day hatred stems from? Look no further than this series from June of 2013. O’Day struck out Bautista early in the series, then Bautista returned the favour in the form of a home run.
April 12th, 2015 – vs Baltimore Orioles
This is where the Blue Jays/Orioles feud starts to really pick up some steam. This was only a few weeks ago, and once again Jose Bautista got the last laugh against Darren O’Day. Joey Bats clubbed a home run after being thrown behind earlier in the at bat.
April 22nd, 2015 – vs Baltimore Orioles
Of course, here’s the latest installment in the feud between the Blue Jays and the Orioles. Adam Jones claims that it was an innocent slip of the hand by Jason Garcia, but Jose Bautista took exception to being thrown at for the second time in consecutive series.
Once again, Bautista did all the talking with an incredible home run, a tremendous bat flip and then let loose a few choice words as he rounded the bases and stared directly into the Baltimore Orioles dugout.
Image courtesy of Sportsnet 590