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In two years Bautista has gone from back up to one of the games best.
And that answers the question of whether Bautista is the best in baseball. Right now, he's only smashed his way up to No. 2 on the list.
With some tweaking, the old saying of "fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me" applies to Bautista. See, last year, he exploded onto the season, bashing his way into the Blue Jays record books.
No one saw it coming, so it was okay to be surprised by what he did. Now, a year later, Bautista is putting together an even more impressive campaign, and it's time for no one to be fooled by him anymore—he is an elite slugger in Major League Baseball. It's okay to utter his name in the same sentence as anyone else you'd mention with Pujols when discussing the game's most potent bats.
Bautista may not reach 50 bombs ever again, but he could wind up with 100 homers over a two-year stretch, something rarely seen outside of an era where players were more juiced than Tropicana oranges.
A season ago, his power launched itself into the spotlight by breaking George Bell's Jays single season home run record. This year, the rest of his offensive game has caught up as he's hitting an impressive .319. More impressively, he's also drawn 22 more walks than strikeouts, allowing him to lead the league with a gaudy .456 OBP. He's slugging better than a year ago as well, posting a .655 mark to lead the MLB.
I won't be fooled. The power in his bat is very real, and if he maintains the rest of his game through this year and into the next, he could assume the top spot without argument.