Jose Bautista, an unlikely home run champion if there ever was one, signed a five-year, $64MM extension yesterday. The Blue Jays are hoping that the 30-year-old's breakout season (.260/.378/.617 line, 54 homers) is a sign that Bautista has transformed himself as a hitter. The skeptics, however, are not convinced that one year of elite production warrants a $64MM commitment.
Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos has earned the benefit of the doubt, if you ask ESPN.com's Buster Olney. But Olney says he probably would have traded Bautista if any team "dangled an acceptable package" and let another organization risk its money.
Dave Cameron of FanGraphs, who wasn't sure about the deal initially, says he likes the extension the more he considers it. Bautista has unusually good control of the strike zone and can still be one of baseball's most productive hitters if his power drops off, according to Cameron.
Anthopoulos told MLB.com's Gregor Chisholm that he believes in Bautista and is willing to take a calculated risk on him. Would you have done the same thing?