I am merely conveying a comparison of two players who are playing well beyond what seems humanly capable.
The two happen to be playing each other tonight at Yankee Stadium, where in the first inning Bautista went yard off of Colon bringing his home-run total to 19 this season.
In Bartolo Colon’s case, his talents were never in question. From the moment he took the mound for the first time in the majors back in 1997, Colon was a rising star. Following his rookie debut, in his first full season in 1998 he was voted an All-Star at the age of 24-years-old.
Colon’s biggest silver came from winning the 2005 CY Young Award, which is the pitching version of the MVP Award. (In case you need a refresher, the CY Young is given once a season, acknowledging the two most impressive arms from each respected league, the American and the National. It is the prize every pitcher dreams about, so the list of winners is the most elite in the history of the game.)
The three seasons following 2005, Colon was on three different teams and had a incurred an injured elbow that was not healing. Colon looked to be heading out the door.
Instead, as he sat out of the entire 2010 season Colon decided he wasn’t done just yet, so when he heard of this progressive procedure that if successful could get him back on the bump again, he jumped.
Serge F. Kovaleski of the New York Times wrote an article recently describing the actual surgery:
Dr. Joseph R. Purita, an orthopedic surgeon who runs a regenerative medicine clinic in Boca Raton, said he and a team of Dominican doctors that he led treated Colon in April 2010. Purita said he employed what he regards as one of his more pioneering techniques: he used fat and bone marrow stem cells from Colon, injecting them back into Colon’s elbow and shoulder to help repair ligament damage and a torn rotator cuff.
Well, the procedure, along with a noted attitude change has worked.
Colon is pitching not just well, but great again. This has caused enormous speculation that HGH was used during the procedure, which all involved completely deny.
Dr. Joseph R. Purita even told ESPNNewYork.com that he is willing to take a lie detector test to prove that he did not use human growth hormone in an elbow surgery that may have saved New York Yankees starter Bartolo Colon’s career.
There has been no proof stating otherwise, but Colon, Dr. Purita and Colon’s agent all understand the position that MLB has taken by conducting an investigation to make sure everything was legal.
Why am I bringing up Toronto Blue Jays OF Jose Bautista in relation to the Colon-drama?
Bautista’s bat had a 2010 that will go down in the books as one of the best on record, with the 54 home-runs sticking out the most.
Now in his ninth pro-season, Bautista is defying all odds and is hitting even better so far in 2011.
So, it makes you wonder where this guy was the first seven years, and why had no one even batted an eye at him over that time span.
No one noticed because Bautista wasn’t even an above average hitter. If you want proof all you have to do is check out the facts…. I mean stats.
Look at the chart I made below of Bautista stats summarized; all information is compliments of BaseballReference.com (click on link for detailed stats):
He has the same amount of stolen bases and is 114 RBIs away from posting the identical amount it took six years to do, in just under two.
Prior to 2010, Bautista’s best season was 2007 and as you can see by the chart his home-runs jumped by 39 and his RBIs went from 63 to 124.
This does not take a genius to see how astonishing and almost surreal a transformation at age 31 this is, because on paper it reads like two singular players.
Just okay to a superstar after playing for the Orioles, Devil Rays and Royals in 2004; only to land with the Pittsburgh Pirates for the next five seasons, before being shipped to Toronto at the end of 2008.
Bautista’s 2010 season was incredible and it earned him the lucrative contract he has never, as the Blue Jays gave him a five year, $65 million deal.
Luckily for Bautista, that in his 30’s he could transform his entire style of hitting so easily and successfully.
Could both Colon and Bautista have finally started to embrace their gift for playing professional baseball?
Most certainly, all you have to do is go watch either of the two play, as both do it so effortlessly it is amazing.
Or are they just two more names to add to the list of players that cheated and made this a torrid time, aka. “Steroid Era”?
Either way, my point is that Bautista has just as many lurking questions as Colon regarding where this sudden burst of professional sports talent stems from.
MLB Commissioner Bud Selig needs to investigate all suspicious PED situations, no matter what or whom it involves.
Owners know that home-runs are what sells tickets and keeps baseball popular, which has declined so far in 2011…. so keeping Bautista comfortable just has guilty written all over it.
It just feels like picking and choosing for the wrong reasons again.
- Finally given some protection in the lineup, Jose Bautista homers in first at-bat (hardballtalk.nbcsports.com)
- Bautista belts home run No. 19 (theglobeandmail.com)
- One Bad Inning Dooms Colon, Yankees (newyork.cbslocal.com)
- Bautista homer kick-starts Jays’ 7-3 win over Yankees (thestar.com)
- Bautista hits 19th HR as Blue Jays power past Yankees (tsn.ca)
- Bautista stings Yankees with No. 19 in Jays’ win (sportsillustrated.cnn.com)
- Yanks intentional walks backfire in loss to Jays (boston.com)
- Game 46 Preview: Blue Jays @ Yankees (pinstripealley.com)