Blue Jays' Bautista recalls 'low blow' by Pirates

Jose Bautista made his first competitive return to Pittsburgh on Friday since he was traded to the...

Jose Bautista made his first competitive return to Pittsburgh on Friday since he was traded to the Blue Jays in 2008 after a falling out with the Pirates. (AFP)

Ken Fidlin, Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 11:13 PM ET

PITTSBURGH - Jose Bautista made his first competitive return to Pittsburgh since he was traded to the Blue Jays in 2008 after a falling out with Pirates general manager Neil Huntington and then-manager John Russell.

Sitting in the dugout at PNC Park Friday, it was clear that the emotions of that summer have not entirely been lost in the mist of ancient history.

“After having been (in Pittsburgh) roughly five years and to send me down just three weeks before the rosters expanded was borderline a low blow,” said Bautista. “The message was sent right there by making that move that I did not have a future here.”

After being sent to the minors and put on waivers, Bautista was traded to the Blue Jays for catcher Robinzon Diaz.

“I saw myself as an everyday player who could contribute to a winning ballclub. I had no idea I could hit 50 or 40 home runs. But I knew I could chip in every day and be in the lineup and be an everyday, above-average major-league baseball player.”

Bautista said it didn’t matter where he went. He simply needed a breath of fresh air.


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