Not only was Peter Alonso‘s 36 minor league homers more than anyone in the Mets organization hit last year, but he was also the first person to hit that many homers since Carlos Delgado hit 38 in 2008. Seeing the numbers and hearing the crack of the bat when he makes contact, we empirically know Alonso hits the all harder than anyone. Well, after yesterday’s Arizona Fall League Game, this statement is no longer just conjecture. It’s fact.
In yesterday’s game, Alonso came up in the first inning, and he would smoke an RBI double off the left-center field wall. (Note: turn on the audio on your device to hear to hear the crack of the bat):
— William Boor (@wboor) October 24, 2018
Seeing and hearing it, you know it was a hard hit ball. According to Statcast, the ball was hit 116.3 MPH. That is hardest hit ball measured by Statcast this year for anyone in the Mets organization. Actually, it’s the hardest hit ball any players in the Mets organization has hit in the Statcast Era (2015).
This type of hitting is why we have Alonso’s stock rise. Entering the season, Alonso had an impressive .883 OPS in his time split between St. Lucie and Binghamton. With some adjustments, his OPS rose to .975.
According to Alonso, the reason for this is his just identifying those pitches which he can hit well and putting a good swing on it. Specifically, Alonso told William Boor of MiLB.com, “During the season, during some rough patches, I was chasing too many pitches down and not capitalizing on some hittable pitches and out here I’m just trying to see the ball where I want it — up — and try to capitalize on that pitch.”
Later on in yesterday’s game, Alonso would see the ball where he wanted it, and he did capitalize on that pitch. At 113 MPH, this ball was hit slightly less hard than the double. However, this second ball would leave the park for a league leading four homers.