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Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Parking Lot Bombs!

In a little over a week, regardless of how competitive and entertaining the World Series is, we will be faced with the longest, coldest stretch of the year. No matter where you live, those twelve or so weeks between the end of the World Series and the beginning of Spring Training are chilling. So, when you need a little baseball fix this offseason, remember this page. Here are a dozen of the most aesthetically-pleasing homers of 2009.

Albert Pujols (STL) vs. Roy Oswalt (HOU) - April 11 - 442 ft.

The season was only a week old, but one already had the feeling that King Albert was up to something special, even for him.

Alfonso Soriano (CHC) vs. Chris Young (SDP) - May 13 - 443 ft.

There weren't a lot of highlights in Alfonso's season, but this leadoff blast reached Waveland Ave. in a hurry.

Justin Upton (ARZ) vs. Hayden Penn (FLA) - May 20 - 457 ft.

Upton had already charted two pretty competent seasons, but in 2009, still only 21-years-old, he arrived, showing us exactly why he was one of the most anticipated prospects in the history of the game. This particular game was his cotillion, as he drove in six runs and launched a pair of bombs, including this moonshot.

Raul Ibanez (PHI) vs. Chien-Ming Wang (NYY) - May 22 - 477 ft.

Hopefully this is just a preview of what we'll be seeing in Yankee Stadium this coming week. Ibanez's blast was the longest homer hit in an American League park in 2009.

Nelson Cruz (TEX) vs. Shawn Kelly (SEA) - July 10 - 459 ft.

The "upper tank" at Safeco Field does not get reached very often. This was the longest homer hit in Seattle this season.

Pablo Sandoval (SFG) vs. Josh Banks (SDP) - July 10 - 462 ft.

Kung Fu Panda hit several tape-measure shots this season, but this was the longest, and it was all the more exciting because it gave his team a large lead in a game which Jonathan Sanchez would eventually turn into a no-hitter.

Mark Reynolds (ARZ) vs. Brad Lidge (PHI) - July 28 - 481 ft.

Taking "TGIF" to a new extreme, Reynolds pounded the Phillies closer, in whose season-long slump, this moment probably represented rock-bottom.

Andrew McCutchen (PIT) vs. Logan Kensing (WAS) - August 1 - 400 ft.

This line-drive shot was McCutchen's third homer of the night and thus the highlight of his sensational rookie campaign.

Prince Fielder (MIL) vs. Kevin Hart (PIT) - August 17 - 410 ft.

There are two kinds of highlight-reel homeruns. The more common kind is the ball which travels a very long way. Probably the more shocking kind, however, is the ball that isn't hit particularly far (as homeruns go) but reaches its destination very, very quickly.

Albert Pujols (STL) vs. Jason Bergmann (WAS) - August 28 - 457 ft.

We could easily make a reel of just Pujols' 450+ ft. drives in 2009. He hit three grand slams that traveled at least that distance, but I opted instead for this walk-off monster.

Ryan Howard (PHI) vs. Tim Hudson (ATL) - September 18 - 473 ft.

Something you'll only hear in Atlanta: "That bounced off the 'Meet Chipper' sign that is above the awning on the main level of the chophouse."

Wladimir Balentien (CIN) vs. Daniel McCutchen (PIT) - October 2 - 495 ft.

This was, quite simply, the longest homerun of 2009.

*Distances are based on calculations at Hit Tracker.

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