A home run off the scoreboard at Florida Auto Exchange Stadium in Dunedin, Fla., and another ball hit to the warning track told onlookers all they needed to know.
Jose Bautista’s left wrist is plenty strong.
The Toronto Blue Jays right-fielder clubbed another homer in Sunday’s 13-5 loss to a Philadelphia Phillies’ split squad to give Bautista two dingers in six spring training games.
“It feels good,” said Bautista of his wrist, which required season-ending surgery last August to stabilize a tendon, costing the slugger 70 games in 2012. “It feels good to connect [with] the ball after a while [of] not playing.”
Bautista still managed to drive in 65 runs in 92 games last season to go with 27 homers for a 48-homer pace but posted a batting average of .241, his lowest since 2009 (.235).
He led the major leagues in home runs in the 2010 and 2011 seasons with 54 and 43, respectively, making him a 2013 pre-season candidate for comeback player of the year honours in the American League.
The gallery above features nine other candidates in the National League and AL. Tell us who you believe will have the biggest rebound season in the comment section below.