Jays From the Couch looks back at the power Jose Bautista displayed in 2015 when the Blue Jays visited other ballparks across MLB.
2015 saw the Toronto Blue Jays produce a league leading 232 home runs. Jose Bautista was responsible for 40 of those. He had some pretty dramatic ones, just ask Darren O’Day. Last April, Shi Davidi of Sportsnet chronicled the history between these two, if you need a refresher.
Of course, the blast Bautista hit last April doesn’t even compare to THE BAT FLIP HR from the ALDS. But, between these two home run moments, he collected 40 round trippers. I wanted to see just how much of an advantage he had hitting in Rogers Centre. More specifically, I wanted to see how much power he displayed in other ballparks. This is not meant to look at they “why” behind his power in each park, it is merely a breakdown of said power.
Most of the sample sizes are too small to make any real inferences about they “why” anyway. For this exercise, I simply took the number of dingers Bautista hit and his average ISO for each series to get a quick idea of his power numbers. His Fangraphs splits saw him hit 17 HR with an ISO of .253. Let’s get to it.
Bautista played a total of 8 games in National League parks. In those 8 games, he hit 3 home runs. They break down as follows:
Atlanta- 0 HR, 0.083 ISO
New York (Mets)- 2 HR, 1.084 ISO
Washington- 1 HR, 0.305 ISO
Philadelphia- 0 HR, 0.000 ISO
Really, the success that Bautista peaked in his 2 HR game against the Mets on June 15. They were both solo shots. Though, he also hit a triple the night before.
Due to the scheduling, the Bautista visited the AL West only once per city for a single series. The west coast, in particular, has a couple of ballparks that are not exactly hitters parks. Oakland and Seattle, for example, are known as pitchers’ parks. But, Joey Bats has the ability to make any park small.
Texas- 1 HR, 0.200 ISO
LA (Angels)- 1 HR, 0.400 ISO
Seattle- 1 HR, 0.400 ISO
Oakland- 1 HR, 0.200 ISO
Houston- 1HR, 0.250 ISO
Overall, these aren’t monster numbers, as you would expect. While he certainly left his mark in each park, the power wasn’t as prevalent in these ballparks.
Like the west coast teams, Bautista would only see each park in the AL Central for one series. Yet, you would think that his power numbers would be a bit better.
Kansas City- 0 HR, 0.194 ISO
Chicago (White Sox)- 0 HR, 0,000 ISO
Detroit- 1 HR, 0.444 ISO
Minnesota- 0 HR, 0.250 ISO
Cleveland- 0 HR, 0.350
We’ve often heard that Bautista enjoys hitting in Minnesota, but that narrative collected no steam in 2015. We also have heard about KC having a very spacious field, which would limit the power a bit. Of course, that wasn’t true during the ALCS when Bautista was doing his best to keep his team alive.
Obviously, we’re going to see a spike in HR totals when we look at the AL East. The sheer nature of the schedule means that more bombs are to be expected. The Blue Jays spend the bulk of their time on the road playing within their division.
Tampa Bay- 1 HR, 0.125 ISO
Baltimore- 2 HR, 0.260 ISO
New York (Yankees)- 4 HR, 0.350 ISO
Boston- 1 HR, 0.083 ISO
Initially, I would have expected the HR totals to be higher form trips to Boston. That green monster is so inviting for Bautista. The other surprise from this list is that the numbers come from a division that is notorious for power. Yet, his power numbers aren’t exactly monstrous. Although, I do like the numbers from New York. Think he played with a bit more focus there this past season?
This exercise would not be complete of we included Bautista’s home numbers. Rogers Centre is known to be a home run hitter’s paradise. Remember when we drooled over imagining what Josh Donaldson would do when he switched from Oakland to Toronto? There’s a reason.
In Toronto, Baitista hit 23 HR with an ISO of .322. That makes sense. We’ve seen so many line drives launched over that left field wall. Of course, there were also a number of no doubters hit as well. Like this one:
As we move into the 2016 season, it will be interesting to see what happens with Jose Bautista and his contract situation. Likely, his fate is tied to that of Edwin Encarnacion. But, for now, we can just sit back and enjoy the power that Bautista displays. Table the talk of age and the resulting decrease in skill. Let’s just enjoy him being a Blue Jay. We don’t know how much longer it’ll last.
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Shaun Doyle is a long time Blue Jays fan and writer! He decided to put those things together and create Jays From the Couch. Shaun is the host of Jays From the Couch Radio, which is highly ranked in iTunes, and he has appeared on TV and radio spots.