Barajas answers booing Phillies fans with his bat
The boos don't bother Rod Barajas. "I laugh at them," the Toronto catcher said. "I joke with [Chris] Coste and [Carlos] Ruiz about them. I go up there to hit and Costie is booing me, too. I don't let it bother me. I have a job to do."
The boos don't bother Rod Barajas.
"I laugh at them," the Toronto catcher said. "I joke with [Chris] Coste and [Carlos] Ruiz about them. I go up there to hit and Costie is booing me, too. I don't let it bother me. I have a job to do."
Barajas did his job well the last three days. He went 4 for 9 with two home runs and four RBIs in helping the Blue Jays survive 36 runners left on base to post a three-game sweep of the Phillies.
Barajas' pinch-hit homer to center field off Ryan Madson on an 0-2 fastball in the top of the ninth inning lifted the Jays to an 8-7 win yesterday.
Barajas spent an ill-fated season with the Phils in 2007 and knows Madson's repertoire well.
"He's got a great change-up," Barajas said. "If he threw me a change-up, I don't think I would have succeeded. I was looking hard - a cutter or fastball. I guessed right. I didn't think I could hit it that far."
Before the 2007 season, the Phils signed Barajas because they weren't sure Ruiz and Coste were ready to catch every day. Barajas was a bust, hitting .230 with four homers and 10 RBIs in 48 games. He fell out of favor with fans - that's putting it lightly - when he failed to block the plate on a play in Miami in May 2007. Hence the boos.
"That's probably why," said Barajas, hitting .276 with six homers and 34 RBIs in 34 games this season. "I'm not surprised. I don't care."
After yesterday's loss, Phils manager Charlie Manuel was critical of the way Barajas played in Philadelphia.
"I felt like once Ruiz started to play, he wouldn't compete for the job," Manuel said. "He's gone [to Toronto] and definitely played a lot better."
Barajas shares a clubhouse with Scott Rolen, another villain in the eyes of Phillies fans. Rolen was drafted by the Phils in 1993 and played for them until a nasty breakup with the club in 2002. Former Phils manager Nick Leyva is the Jays' third-base coach.
"Leyva thought he might get more [boos] than me," said Rolen, who was 6 for 14 with four RBIs in the series. "I stopped that.
"Actually, they weren't boos. They were yelling Dreeeew. J.D. Drew."
Rolen said the boos Barajas received were wimpy compared to the ones he got.
"I've got a longer history," he said. "He was only here one year. His boos aren't as heartfelt.
"Really, it doesn't bother me. It's hard enough to play this damn game. Guys are throwing 95. I'm not going to go overboard with axes to grind."
Neither is Barajas.
"In my opinion, we played the toughest team in the National League and came out with a sweep," he said. "That's all that matters."