Report: Jose Bautista Working Out for DR as a Pitcher, Throws 94 MPH Fastball

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistMarch 2, 2020

PHILADELPHIA, PA - SEPTEMBER 28: Jose Bautista #19 of the Philadelphia Phillies in action against the Atlanta Braves during a game at Citizens Bank Park on September 28, 2018 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
Rich Schultz/Getty Images

After a 15-year career in the majors as a hitter, Jose Bautista is now trying his hand as a pitcher.

According to Jeff Passan of ESPN, the 39-year-old "spent this winter working out as a pitcher in hopes of returning as a two-way player."

Passan added a scouting report of the former slugger:

Jeff Passan @JeffPassan

I've seen video of Jose Bautista throwing a bullpen session. Couldn't tell the velocity, but one source said he can run his fastball up to 94. His slider had legitimate tilt -- threw a short one and a bigger bender. @STR0 said in January he could pitch in a big league bullpen.

Bautista is expected to play first base for the Dominican Republic during qualifying for the 2020 Summer Olympics this month.

The six-time All-Star was best known for his time with the Toronto Blue Jays, where he hit 288 of his 344 career home runs. He initially ended his career touring the NL East, appearing for the Atlanta Braves, New York Mets and Philadelphia Phillies during the 2018 season.

In 1,798 games in the majors and 433 games in the minors, however, he never threw a single pitch.

Bautista did at least often showcase his arm playing the majority of his career in right field, totaling 103 outfield assists.

His athleticism could also lead to a successful pitching career, as Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet noted:

Ben Nicholson-Smith @bnicholsonsmith

Wouldn't be surprised if Jose Bautista could pitch a little Always had a strong throwing arm and was athletic enough to hit home runs left-handed in BP https://t.co/0J9kHDNVU6

Considering players like Kenley Jansen and Sean Doolittle began their minor league careers as hitters before blossoming into successful pitchers in the majors, it's difficult to completely rule out a second run for Bautista in the majors.


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