Jorge Soler’s home runs for the Kansas City Royals are not just plentiful this year, they are traveling long distances. Let’s take a look at the numbers.
Watching Jorge Soler eclipse Mike Moustakas for the Kansas City Royals single-season home run record has been a nice distraction from the team sliding to another 100 loss season. For the last week and a half, there is also the drama of seeing if Soler can become the first Kansas City player to lead the American League in dingers.
As I have kept a closer eye on this effort by Soler, I started noticing that many of these long balls had distances the began with the number four…as in over 400 feet. These were not balls that were just skimming over the fence or majestic moon shots that looked good on TV but were only carrying 350 feet.
Thanks to a recap of all home runs this year by DingerTracker, I was able to plug all of Soler’s shots into an Excel spreadsheet and calculate impressive numbers. The average length each one of his bombs traveled is 413 feet so far. According to Sports Illustrated, that is over ten feet longer than the mean distance a home run has sailed in all the major leagues this season.
Pretty good, but then I noticed as the spotlight has been brighter on Jorge the last few weeks approaching the team record and the AL lead, his blast span has increased. The average distance of his last 13 bombs is up to 421 feet. The last seven homers are balancing out at 427 feet. It is as if the pressure of eclipsing records and becoming the league leader has made him more energized.
Although his longest of the year, a 465 foot August 3rd blast off Kyle Gibson of the Minnesota Twins on an 85-mph pitch, does not even crack the top ten overall in MLB distance this year, Soler is consistently squaring up the balls he is depositing over the fence.
With measurements like 447, 446, 439, 450 and 431 posted in the month of September, be sure to enjoy the majesty of the long balls Soler is providing us to close out the season.