- Associated Press - Sunday, May 15, 2011

MINNEAPOLIS - Jose Bautista hit three homers for the first time in his career Sunday, adding to his major league-leading total and sending the Toronto Blue Jays to an 11-3 victory over the Minnesota Twins and a sweep of their three-game series.

Bautista, who led the majors with 54 homers last year, continued his recent tear. The right fielder is hitting .415 with 13 homers and 21 RBI over the past 19 games, and his 16 home runs this season are just two behind the total of the entire Twins team.

After popping out to third base in the first inning Sunday, Bautista hit a solo home run to the second deck of left field off of Twins starter Brian Duensing in the third. In the fourth, Bautista belted a solo homer just inside the left-field line off of reliever Kevin Slowey.

Both of those homers were hit into a strong wind that was blowing in from left at more than 20 mph.

In the sixth, Bautista’s two-run homer to right-center just cleared the 23-foot high wall and gave Toronto an 11-3 lead. Before hitting into a fielder’s choice in the eighth, Bautista had homered four times in five plate appearances going back to Saturday’s 11th-inning homer.

Bautista has 11 multi-home run games since the beginning of the 2010 season and three this season.

His recent surge has him ahead of last year’s pace; he reached 16 homers May 30.

Bautista also tied the Blue Jays team record for homers through 40 games.

Carlos Delgado had 16 homers through 40 games in 2001.

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