The biggest blast of the year
This is going to be Mike Trout. I’m telling you this in advance, because it’s completely unfair that it’s Mike Trout. The best player in baseball is finally going to win his first AL MVP this year, and part of his greatness is that he does so many things well. He’s the best hitter in the game; he adds value on the bases; he’s been a very good center fielder.
And yes, he hits home runs, too. But you wouldn’t look at him and expect that he’d hit massive bombs for homers, or that he’d have the longest home run of the season. You’d think Giancarlo Stanton, or David Ortiz, or Jose Abreu. It’s not any of them. It’s Trout, doing this to poor unfortunate Jason Vargas in June in Kansas City. Just listen to the announcers.
Not only was this the longest homer of the year, at a listed 489 feet, it’s the second-longest homer of the last five seasons, topped only by a Stanton blast in 2012. It’s so unfair how good Trout is, and how good he looks being that good…and he just turned 23.
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The best team home run celebration
Well, that’s easy. BRING ME THE BUBBLES.
For most of the season, whenever the Dodgers have hit a big home run, they’ve celebrated in the dugout with bubbles, which are awesome. Who doesn’t like bubbles?
Oh, Major League Baseball, that’s who, because in August, MLB ordered the Dodgers to stop using it. But bubbles cannot be stopped because after a brief absence, the bubbles have been back at full strength. The celebrations don’t stop there, of course. Justin Turner and Adrian Gonzalez have incorporated a “selfie” pose after big plays, too.
All that, and we haven’t even included a Yasiel Puig bat flip. This team knows how to party.
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With another regular season in the books, we’re hearing plenty about who should be MVP, who will win the World Series, who will get this winter’s big free agent contracts, etc. We are hearing all about a potential matchup in the World Series that everyone wants to see: Mike Trout versus Clayton Kershaw. Those are all important conversations, and some will have major impacts on the games for years to come.
That’s all great. Baseball fans should definitely be talking about those things. Hall of Fame plaques are built off MVP awards and Cy Youngs, as well as infamous World Series moments and the rings that come from them. But lets also not forget that this is a game, and it’s about fun. Which player has the most heat in his sneaker closet? Which player has the biggest cannon for an arm? (Take a bow, Yoenis Cespedes.) Which player has the most unhittable pitch? So before we get too deep into the big, heavy talk — Remember when we predicted Oakland was going to win it all? And that Bryce Harper was the most important player in baseball? — let’s not forget about what’s cool, and this season had no shortage of awesome moments and incredible displays.
Cool, of course, is a subjective thing. What you might like someone else might disagree with. That’s fair. But it’s also hard to look at some of these selected moments from the 2014 season and not think to yourself “…wow.” With the postseason set to kick off, relive the best moments of the regular season by going to the Game Beyond the Game: The Real 2014 Baseball Awards.
Follow Mike on Twitter at @mike_petriello
image via Erik Drost/Flickr Creative Commons