Jose Bautista Ties Unceremonious Blue Jays Single-Season Record

Bleacher Report MilestonesB/R StaffSeptember 20, 2017

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - SEPTEMBER 14: Jose Bautista #19 of the Toronto Blue Jays looks on before the game against the Minnesota Twins on September 14, 2017 at Target Field in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Twins defeated the Blue Jays 3-2 in ten innings. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

Toronto Blue Jays right fielder Jose Bautista went 0-for-4 during Tuesday's affair against the Kansas City Royals, striking out twice.

Not only was it a poor showing at the dish, but Bautista's two strikeouts gave him 159 for the season. That season total ties the veteran with Jose Canseco (1998) and Kelly Johnson (2012) for the most in a single season in team history, per Sportsnet Stats.

However, Bautista and the Blue Jays have 11 games remaining on the schedule, meaning he will inevitably take sole possession of the top spot if he continues playing on a daily basis.

Major League Baseball, on the whole, has slanted toward the long ball and strikeout. Despite setting a Blue Jays record for strikeouts in 2017, Bautista surprisingly ranks 16th in the majors in the category this season. New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge leads the category with 198 on the season.

Bautista didn't contribute to the stat Tuesday, but he's notched his fair share—22, to be exact—of home runs that led to a league record of 5,707 being set, per Baseball Reference. Further evidence of the trend toward the long ball, Judge also leads the league in homers, likely the reason he still receives everyday at-bats.

Generally, the Blue Jays have ranked among the top teams each season in the home run department. The departure of Edwin Encarnacion in the offseason ate into that total, but the emergence of Justin Smoak has somewhat balanced it out. Toronto ranks 12th in the category in 2017, totaling 206.

Bautista's first shot at setting the strikeout mark arrives Wednesday evening when the Blue Jays take on the Royals in the second of a three-game set.

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