Breaking Down Yoenis Cespedes' Historic 3-Homer Night
The New York Mets scored 14 runs Tuesday night in Philadelphia behind big nights from Yoenis Cespedes, Asdrubal Cabrera and Lucas Duda. Travis d'Arnaud also collected his first home run of the season as the offense cranked out 20 hits in total.
But Cespedes stole the show as only he can.
Cespedes launched three monster home runs on the night, starting with a first-inning three-run shot to straightaway center before an out was even recorded. He followed that up with solo shots in the fourth and fifth innings as the Mets offense scored in every frame except the seventh.
There was no stopping @ynscspds tonight. https://t.co/FR1zOFoRI6 pic.twitter.com/6PYb3sX2YD
— MLB (@MLB) April 12, 2017
Three homers in a game is notable enough, but as with all things Cespedes, the best part is how he does it.
The first inning home run was the longest of his night at 417 feet, but that dinger amazingly had the slowest exit velocity of 105.2 miles per hour (MPH), per Statcast. His second home run of the night had the highest exit velocity at 109.3 MPH while the final home run was hit 108.3 MPH but travelled the least amount of distance.
|Inning of Home Run||Exit Velocity (MPH)||DIstance (feet)|
He did come up to bat again in the seventh inning, and while everyone hoped for another tater, Cespedes treated us something else remarkable-- a double off the center field wall with an exit velocity of 111 MPH, his hardest hit ball of the night. The double gave him 14 total bases in the game, tied for the most total bases for a Phillies opponent.
The three homers plus the double gave him four "barrels" -- a Statcast metric that determines how squarely the ball is hit -- on the night, and he became only the third player to register four "barrelled" hits in one game since Statcast began tracking it.
It's still early, but Cespedes' batted-ball numbers are insane. His hard-hit rate of 56% is otherworldly as is his 26.7% home-run-to-fly-ball rate, but both numbers should normalize over the next few weeks.
It is worth noting that Cespedes hit career-highs marks in both of these metrics last year and looks to have carried that success over into this season. He's also drawn four walks with only seven strikeouts -- in line with last year's rates -- and is hitting the ball to centerfield 44% of the time, a figure that has improved in each of the last two seasons.
Last night, Cespedes became the first Mets player to have multiple three-home run games after his first such game in Colorado in 2015. Even as his numbers come back to Earth as we should expect, let's hope there's even more of this during the upcoming season.
After all, games like these make it easy to appreciate how good Cespedes is and how much fun he is to watch.