The shortened season means the Royals didn’t have as many chances to hit home runs, but did you know they still more home runs this year (68) than they did the entire 1976 season (65)? And that team finished in first place! The game has changed!
Here are the top home runs of 2020.
August 8 - Jorge Soler goes long, and I mean long, twice against the Twins
We knew Jorge Soler had power after he led the American League in home runs in 2019, and he continued to flex that muscle in 2020. On August 8 against the Twins, Soler mashed not one, but two dingers. The first was a solo shot in the third that went 440 feet. But he outdid himself in the fourth with a three-run home that went 448 feet, making him the fifteenth player since 2015 to hit multiple home runs in a game exceeding 440 feet, according to Statcast.
August 15 - Whit Merrifield’s adds the most Win Probability with a three-run home run
If you wanted to know which home run gave the Royals the biggest increase in their chances to win the game, there is a useful metric that calculates that - Win Probability Added (WPA). And it shouldn’t be a big surprise that the home run with the most WPA came from the clutchy bat of “professional hitter” Whit Merrifield and his three-run home run against the Twins in the fourth inning on August 15 that gave the Royals a 4-1 lead they would not relinquish.
August 29 - Ryan McBroom sets club record for pinch hit home runs
By day, Ryan McBroom is a mild-mannered first baseman. But by night, he becomes a pinch-hitting destroyer of dreams named “Ryan McBoom.” Ryan showed off his late inning prowess not once, not twice, but three times this year, setting a club record for pinch-hit home runs, capped off by this seventh-inning blast against the White Sox to tie the game and give the Royals a chance to eventually win it.
September 7 - Mondi takes out his frustrations with the longest Royals blast this year
There was no player in baseball more enigmatic than Adalberto Mondesi this season. Over the first 40 games he was the worst player in baseball, and over the last 20 games he was one of the best. He took out some of his frustrations on the first half with this absolute bomb off Cleveland’s Zach Plesac. The ball traveled 458 feet, the longest home run hit by any Royals player this year.
September 13 - Hunter Dozier sends it high and long
It was a weird year for Hunter Dozier who missed time with a positive COVID-19 test, and saw his offensive numbers drop a bit. But he showed he still has good power when he unleashed this towering bomb in a laugher against the Pirates. The ball traveled 442 feet with the best exit velocity by a Royals hitter this year, with the ball traveling at 110.3 mph. Hopefully this is a sign he can cover his prodigious power with a more normal season in 2021.
Did I miss any? What was your favorite home run of 2020?
What was the best Royals home run of 2020?
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Soler’s pair of 440-foot bombs
Whit’s three-run HR
Ryan McBroom’s record third pinch-hit HR
Mondesi’s 458-foot blast
Hunter Dozier’s high and long homer