After hitting a home run in each of the last five games, Toronto Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista enters Tuesday's contest against the Tampa Bay Rays looking to match Jose Cruz Jr.'s franchise record of six consecutive games with a home run, per Complete Baseball Encyclopedia (via GammonsDaily.com).
Already just the second player in Jays history with a streak of five games or more, Bautista only has one non-homer hit—a single from last Tuesday's game against the Boston Red Sox—during his historic run. Having gone hitless in his four games prior to the streak, the slugging outfielder's hit total over the last nine contests consists of five home runs and just the one single.
Cruz Jr.'s streak came toward the end of the 2001 campaign when he homered in six consecutive games from Sep. 29 to Oct. 5. Unlike Bautista, Cruz Jr. added plenty of other hits during his streak, recording three doubles and three singles during the six-game stretch.
A talented player who never quite lived up to his top-prospect billing, Cruz Jr. set personal bests in home runs (34), RBI (88), runs (92), stolen bases (32), batting average (.272) and OPS (.856) that year.
Should Bautista extend his streak Tuesday night to match Cruz's, he'll sit just two games away from the all-time MLB record of eight straight games with a homer, set by Dale Long (1956), Don Mattingly (1987) and Ken Griffey Jr. (1993), per Baseball-Almanac.com.