Sunday, May 23, 2010
This Week's Shitty Blue Jay: Tony Batista
As we were closing out a series this long weekend with Arizona, it is quite fitting looking back at how we ripped them off, stealing Tony Batista and Brawlin' John Frascatore from them almost 11 years ago.
Batista was the centerpiece of that trade, after the Blue Jays learned that they lost their star shortstop Alex Gonzalez for the 1999 season, with a bum shoulder. They needed an infielder, fast.
What the Jays needed at that position was just a body to fill in for the year, but what they got in return was beyond expectations. At shortstop, he was slick. He made effortless plays, sucking up groundballs, and gliding the balls to first. It was like watching poetry on the infield.
Back then, I wasn't such an admirer of defensive plays. But Batista at short was a beautiful thing to watch. And no, I'm not gay. Just ask your mom, about that thing I do . . .
Batista also had that fucked-up open stance at bat, with front foot looking like it's out of the batter's box. Nonetheless, he hit 26 HR in 1999 with that stupid stance, 41 in 2000, and another 25 in 2001 for us, before getting shipped off to Baltimore for a round of beers at the titty bar.
He maintained a .251 batting average for his career, bouncing around from Baltimore to Montreal to Japan to Minnesota. He finished his career with Les Expos in 2007, after they relocated to Washington.
His claim to fame, in a YouTube sense, was for scaring a pitcher after being hit by a pitch. Check it out:
You'll also notice that the pitcher SWALLOWS!
Like your mom!
Now part of the SWALLOWS team. Get it?
Next Week: Bill Risley (ugh, it's gonna suck. You might want to skip a week)
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