Evan Gattis Blasts MLB's Longest Home Run of 2013 off Cole Hamels

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Evan Gattis Blasts MLB's Longest Home Run of 2013 off Cole Hamels
Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

It took nearly four months for someone to beat Mark Trumbo's 475-foot blast as the longest home run of the 2013 regular season, a feat accomplished by Hunter Pence on Aug. 27 with a 476-foot shot off Colorado's Chad Bettis.

It took Evan Gattis less than two weeks to best Pence with this 486-foot moonshot off Cole Hamels in the second inning of Sunday's game between the Braves and Phillies:

That was the first of two long balls that Gattis smacked off Hamels during the game—both solo shots that accounted for all of Atlanta's offense on the day.

After the game, Hamels was in awe of El Oso Blanco, as he explained to David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:

ESPN's Jerry Crasnick put things in simpler terms:

Not only did Gattis overtake Pence for the longest home run in baseball this season, he set a bit of history at Citizens Bank Park in the process, as noted by ESPN's Jayson Stark:

This isn't the first time we've seen Gattis flex his muscles at the plate.

In spring training, during an exhibition game against a team comprised of some of Atlanta's top prospects, Gattis hit a homer that literally left Trustmark Park, home of the team's Double-A affiliate, the Mississippi Braves:

Impressed? It gets better.

Of Gattis' 18 home runs on the season, a dozen have traveled at least 400 feet. That puts him among the leaders for the "Golden Sledgehammer," an honor in name only that is awarded to the player with at least 16 home runs on the season who has the highest average distance as measured by ESPN's Home Run Tracker.

After his pair of shots against Hamels—the second of which traveled 403 feet—Gattis is an inch away from breaking into the top 10 on that leaderboard:

Player Team HR Avg. HR Distance (in Feet)
Eric Hosmer KC 16 420.0
Justin Upton ATL 24 419.0
Hunter Pence SF 19 417.6
Mike Trout LAA 23 417.4
Mark Trumbo LAA 31 413.3
Marlon Byrd NYM/PIT 22 412.2
Mike Napoli BOS 21 411.4
Mark Reynolds CLE/NYY 17 411.0
Giancarlo Stanton MIA 19 410.6
Carlos Gonzalez COL 26 409.3
Evan Gattis ATL 18 409.2

You'll notice that some of the more well-known sluggers in the game, like David Ortiz, Adam Dunn and MLB home run leader Chris Davis, aren't ahead of Gattis on that list.

That's impressive.

When you consider that he's smacked 18 home runs in only 85 games this season, it's clear Gattis' power is for real. Thinking that he could be a 30-home run player with regular playing time isn't a stretch.

Gattis' potential, along with the presence of prospect Christian Bethancourt, a defensive whiz with a mediocre bat, makes Atlanta's decision whether to try to re-sign perennial All-Star Brian McCann after the season all the more difficult.

That's not a bad problem to have.

 

*Unless otherwise noted, all home run information courtesy of ESPN's Home Run Tracker.

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