Bautista still unlucky at 11

Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista has gone 11 games without hitting a home run. (JAMIE...

Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista has gone 11 games without hitting a home run. (JAMIE SQUIRE/Getty Images/AFP)

MIKE RUTSEY, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 8:56 PM ET

KANSAS CITY - The Blue Jays road trip ended with a whimper, not a bang.

Itís 11 games and counting now since slugger Jose Bautista hit one out while on the pitching front, Ricky Romero had all the breaks go against him in a 3-2 loss to the Kansas City Royals on Thursday afternoon.

So no home runs from your top gun on the seven-game trip and two losses from your No. 1 starter ó Romero ó and still the Jays ended up 4-3 overall.

Over the 11 games that Bautista has been kept in the park, the Jays have gone 6-5.

The glass half full crowd can look on the two developments as a positive sign, that the John Farrell Jays can hold their own when the best they have hits a cool spot.

The glass half empty side can say itís wasted opportunities.

For his part Bautista, who was 0-for-3 with a walk on Thursday, said his current power slump ó he also doesnít have an extra-base hit in nine consecutive games ó is the result of poor mechanics.

ďIím getting plenty of pitches, itís just that Iím not getting ready on time consistently and my load (his trigger mechanism that starts his swing) is too big and too long right now, but Iím working on it,Ē Bautista said. ďI just havenít managed to make the adjustments during the game. Itís showing a little bit in the results.

ďIím not even really hitting that many balls as hard as I usually do, as consistently as I do. Itís a rough patch in the season. I said it before, that I didnít expect to continue doing what I was doing the whole season. That would have been pretty hard. Iím working on getting back to where I was and itís a day to day thing.Ē

It hasnít been as if Bautista has been a stiff at the plate. Over his past 11 games heís hitting .316 (12-for-38) with one double, nine runs scored, six RBIs and 12 walks.

There was no way anyone thought he would continue the pace he set through April and May when he drilled 20 home runs over 43 games.

For those who are starting to panic, Bautista doesnít believe the problem is a major one.

ďI know the changes that I have to do and I feel that Iím working on it in practice and Iím beginning to get the feeling during BP and in the cage,Ē Bautista said. ďBut when the game starts, it hasnít translated.Ē

Bautista may not be raking like he did last month, but opposing managers arenít about to give him the opportunity to come through when the game is on the line.

In the eighth inning Thursday, with a runner on second and one out and the Royals up 3-2, reliever Aaron Crow threw four pitches well off the plate for the intentional, unintentional walk, even though Adam Lind, who was 3-for-3 (all singles) was on deck.

Bautista said he wasnít frustrated by not getting anything to hit in those situations.

ďItís not frustrating, I donít expect them to throw balls right down the middle,Ē he said. ďThe fact that theyíre far away is just a coincidence. I donít mind that at all. If the guys behind me do what they can do, like Lindy and whoever is hitting behind him, itís going to mean more runs for us.

ďWhat I canít do is start swinging at pitches (out of the zone) that I know I canít hit hard and hurt the team in that sense.Ē

That Lind has come back from the disabled list and over the past six games has produced in such terrific fashion ó four homers, 10 RBIs and a .429 average (9-for-21) ó has been a godsend given Bautistaís power outage.

ďIím not the only reason why we win games,Ē Bautista said. ďWe have great hitters on this team and Iím not the only one that can hit a home run. Itís always nice to win and whether Iím hitting well or not, it doesnít really matter to me.

ďAs long as we can go out here and get some wins, itís the result weíre looking for when we show up at the ballpark.Ē

Those wins, though, seem to come more frequently when Bautistaís launching them.


Videos

Photos