Toronto Blue Jays Slugger José Bautista Moved to Third Base

The Toronto Blue Jays are moving their star slugger, José Bautista, to third base in an effort to get more production from that position.

The club is in desperate need of a spark. Losers of nine of their last 13 games, the Blue Jays have been knocked out of contention in the AL East - mostly because of their offensive struggles.

The team has scored more than four runs only once during the 13 games stretch and was particularly inept against the Braves, managing just two runs and 13 hits in three losses at Turner Field.

Bautista hit his 22nd homer on Wednesday nights game against the Braves.

Bautista led the majors with 54 home runs last season, and is batting .325 with 22 home runs this season.

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General manager Alex Anthopoulous said Thursday Bautista will take a few days before settling in at third. Bautista has seen significant time at third base in his career. Last year he started 45 games there.

The Jays called up outfielder Eric Thames. Thames was hitting .375 with eight doubles, two triples, one home run and 15 RBIs in 17 games this month.

To make room on their roster, infielder Mike McCoy was sent to a minor league team in Las Vegas.

Based on reporting by the Associated Press.

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