Bryce Harper’s been having a rough go of it lately. He’s been a semi-regular subject of the Philadelphia faithful’s boo birds, and is hitting a less-than-impressive .222/.363/.430 slash line. He’s also striking out a shit ton. Yet, there’s still a reason why Philadelphia decided to give him a $330 million contract, and he showed it on Friday against the Rockies.
On the first pitch of his at-bat at the bottom of the first, Harper launched Antonio Senzatela’s ball into the goddamn stratosphere, where it later came down on Citizen Bank Park’s Ashburn Alley. Not only was it a beauty to look at, it was also quite an enjoyable crack to listen to.
Statcast measured the dinger to have an exit velocity of 114.1 mph—the third-hardest hit homer out of the 137 he’s smashed since 2015, per Daren Willman. The estimated distance on the homer was 466 feet, but that honestly seems to be a light estimate given the reaction from the broadcasters and the fact that it looked like the ball landed more than 60 feet past the center field wall.
Congrats to Harper on buying himself at least one plate appearance where he won’t be mercilessly booed when he strikes out. If anything, it’ll be much more tepid.