The Toronto Blue Jays announced today that Jose Bautista will miss the remainder of the season after being scheduled to undergo surgery on his left wrist. The slugger first injured his wrist during an at bat against the New York Yankees on July 16 .  After missing 34 games for rest and a rehab assignment, Bautista returned to the Blue Jays lineup against the Baltimore Orioles on August 24th only to re-injure his wrist the next day after only five plate appearances.

According to reports, the surgery to repair the tendon sheath in Bautista’s left wrist wrist will be performed at some point next week. Generally speaking, a return to prominence for power hitters like Bautista after suffering a wrist injury that requires surgery can be difficult. In 2008, Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz had a similar injury and avoided surgery, but struggled through that year and next, leaving doubt about his future before turning things around in 2010.

The Blue Jays right fielder will finish the season with 27 home runs over 399 plate appearances, along with an .886 OPS, .376 wOBA and a 139 wRC+. While still a successful season, his numbers are a significant drop off from his MVP caliber 2011 when he put up a 1.055 OPS, .441 wOBA and a 181 wRC+.

Comments (18)

  1. I guess we shouldn’t be surprised at this given recent events, but man, this really, really sucks.

    I’m worried about what he’ll look like when he comes back, and the one-two punch of no Stroman and no Bautista to close out the year is the worst.

  2. i kind of wish this was crystal meth rather than wrist surgery :(

  3. Parkes,

    Can you actually think of any sluggers that have had wrist-tendon-sheath surgery? I can’t. I’m skeptical that you can make a claim that a “return to prominence… can be especially difficult” for power hitters — without any comparables listed.

    Happy to be proven wrong…

    • prefer you were proven right, though.

    • David Ortiz had same surgery in 2008. Missed 8 weeks, was average after with a bad 2009 following. Maybe same expectations of a hamate break

      • Can’t be the same surgery — Ortiz missed 2 months, Bautista is expected to need 6 months to recover. Good thought, though.

        • Ya, Ortiz didn’t have surgery. Rehabbed with cast for partial tear of sheath. So surgery is obviously right thing, but holy fuck, has this team had a successful rehab yet? Santos, Lawrie, Hutchison, Lind’s back, Bautista. When does Morrow have a setback?

          • Right. The Ortiz and Bautista injuries are similar but the treatment is not. Parkes’s comparison of a guy who didn’t have surgery and struggled with a guy who elected to have surgery is not a fair comparison.

  4. Parkes is just waiting for that contract to not work out.

    • I haven’t run the numbers, but I’m pretty sure that contract has already worked out even if Bautista is just replacement level for the next three years.

  5. A sample size of one is hardly large enough to infer anything about Jose’s recovery time.

  6. I’ve found a few articles online that reference wrist surgery for sluggers. In each case, the surgery in question repaired a torn tendon, not a stretched sheath. Of the sluggers mentioned, three returned to form, and one did not but the wrist surgery was not his only long-term injury.

    The three that did:
    Griffey (surgery: 1995)
    Ad. Gonzalez (2002)
    Ja. Giambi (2006)

    Obviously the first two went on to terrific careers. Giambi had 14 HR in 83 G in 2007 and 32 HR in 145 in 2008, obviously still power numbers.

    The guy who never returned to form:
    N. Johnson (2010) — but as mentioned above, hard to say that it was his wrist and not other myriad injuries that did him in.

    Okay, so four is a small sample. The biggest problem finding more examples is that not everyone who had wrist surgery that I could find information on was a slugger (i.e. Mark De Rosa). The point is, wrist surgery is not a death knell for a slugger and at least a few elite ones who’ve had more severe injuries than Bautista (Griffey, AGonz, Giambi) had no problem recovering and producing.

  7. Shouldnt be all that much of a surprise that his numbers are down considering how many games he’s missed. I think he’ll bounce back next year.

  8. Rogers should just go ahead and rename the team “The Toronto Grimm Reaper’s Aborted Fetuses”.

    FML! Shoot me in the face!

  9. Well at least it will help us secure a top 5 draft pick

  10. @ m2

    But of the three successful guys you mentioned, 2 were juicers…

  11. He just needs to heal properly….Ortiz avoided surgery but never healed properly because he kept swinging….Bautista needed to be shut down and had it taken care of because all it wouldve done was make him mediocre and prolonged the healing of his tendon. Its good he’s having surgery finally.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *