Toronto’s first order of business during the winter meetings was to acquire an experienced starter to support AL Cy Young Award winner Roy Halladay in the rotation, and settled on Batista, signing the right-hander to a $13.1 million, three-year contract
Batista, 10-9 with a 3.54 ERA for Arizona last season, has yet to earn a victory this season after seven starts.
It’s not that he hasn’t pitched well at times. Batista has allowed three earned runs or fewer in five of his outings, including a solid effort against the Chicago White Sox on Saturday.
“This game is not for personal glory,” said Batista, after allowing just two runs and six hits over seven innings in Toronto’s 4-2 win. “You just need the team to win.”
Toronto, which dropped a 4-3 decision at Kansas City on Thursday, has lost two straight after a season-high six-game winning streak. To resume their winning ways—and help Batista snap his winless skid—the Jays will have to get past Batista’s former teammate in Arizona, Boston’s Curt Schilling.
The veteran right-hander is coming off his finest effort of the season. He pitched his first AL complete game and the 80th of his career, allowing one run and five hits while striking out eight in Boston’s 9-1 win over Kansas City on Saturday.
Toronto has already beaten Schilling this season. Chris Gomez hit a tiebreaking grand slam off Schilling in the eighth inning of a 7-3 win over Boston on April 22, giving the Jays their first home victory of the season.
Schilling is 1-5 with a a 5.73 ERA in 11 career appearances, including seven starts, against Toronto.
Boston fell to Cleveland, 6-4 on Wednesday for its third loss in four games.