MLB home run record set to fall

Truro Daily News - - SPORTS - By roN­ald BluM thE AS­So­CI­AtED PRESS

New York Yan­kees’ Aaron Judge hits a three-run home run dur­ing the fourth in­ning against the Bal­ti­more Ori­oles.

ex­tra 149 miles of long balls at this year’s av­er­age home run length of 400 feet, or 15 miles more than the driv­ing dis­tance be­tween Philadel­phia’s Cit­i­zen’s Bank Park and Wash­ing­ton’s Na­tion­als Park.

“The game has changed,” New York Yan­kees man­ager Joe Gi­rardi said. “From when I started, there’s a lot less stolen bases, there’s a lot less bunt­ing, there’s a lot less hit­ting-and-run­ning. You don’t give outs away, and you let guys swing the bat.”

Al­ready 107 play­ers have hit 20 homers this year, just three shy of the record set last sea­son — and up from 64 in 2015, ac­cord­ing to the Elias Sports Bureau.

Along with soar­ing shots come strike­outs, which will set a record

for the 10th con­sec­u­tive year. There were 36,964 whiffs through Sun­day, an av­er­age of 8.25 per team per game that trans­lates to 40,099.

“The fo­cus is hit­ting homers and tol­er­at­ing strike­outs,” Reg­gie Jack­son said. “I don’t re­ally like all the strike­outs, and I was the king.”

Base­ball of­fi­cials are wor­ried about de­creas­ing ac­tion and have been alarmed by the strike­out rise. This year’s to­tal is up from 38,982 last year and an in­crease of nearly 8,000 from the 32,189 in 2007.

The strike­out spike co­in­cides with a rise in fast­ball ve­loc­ity; fourseam­ers have av­er­aged 93.2 m.p.h. this year, up from 91.9 m.p.h. in 2008, ac­cord­ing to MLB data.

AP Photo

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