You're probably familiar with Statcast which has been all the rage since it's introduction last season. If you haven't heard, Major League Baseball implemented radar based technology that tracks the movement of all players on the field at any given time, giving us a statistical snapshot of what happened on any given play. While not everything is public yet, we now know a lot more than we did before - things like how fast the ball was hit off the bat, true distance, launch angle, and more are available for public use.
Let's dive in to the funnest (yes that's a word) Statcast numbers so far!
Hardest hit ball, pitcher edition
1. Jonathan Schoop's homerun off Kendall Graveman, 113.61 MPH
I don't have much to add here. Just watch the video to see Schoop turn a baseball and a bat into a heat seeking death missile.
By the way, Schoop has the 12th hardest hit ball off the A's this year too.
2. Hanley Ramirez Apollo 18 off Sean Manaea, 113.59 MPH
In three decades when Sean Manaea is being inducted into the Hall of Fame in an A's hat wearing the same infectious smile he rocks today, we'll all look back at that start against the Red Sox and laugh. In an 0-0 count, Sean Manaea threw a bouncy ball to a Ramirez who launched said ball into space. Manaea is going to be a star, book it, but he'll forever be known for making the game of baseball intergalactic.
3. Jose Abreu's double off Rich Hill, 113.39 MPH
Speaking of hilarious memories, remember Rich Hill's start to 2016? He hit the first batter he faced in a 2.2 inning outing. Mixed in there was a blast by Jose Abreu, held only in the park by a fortunately low launch angle.
Hardest hit ball, Khris Davis edition
Davis steals the show for A's hitters, so we'll do two separate sections.
1. Khris Davis single off Roberto Osuna, 115.87 MPH
There wasn't a clear turning point in Davis's transition from a contact averse horror to a slugging stud, but it happened somewhere around this absolute bullet off Blue Jays closer Roberto Osuna. At 115.87 MPH, Davis's liner is the 16th hardest hit ball this year in all of baseball.
2. Khris Davis single off Aaron Sanchez, 113.05 MPH
Something about those Jays, man. When you swing as hard as you can every time you step in the box, you're bound to hit some shots.
3. Khris Davis homerun off Justin Verlander, 112.70 MPH
Spoiler alert, this blast will show up again in are longest dinger department. Is there a pitcher who you'd rather see Davis crush a ball off of over Verlander? Maybe John Lackey, but then we'd have to see his stupid face. So let's stick with Verlander.
Hardest hit ball, non Khris Davis edition
Billy Butler's 112.41 MPH double off Justin Verlander
The dude still has some pop in his bat, even if it's often directed at the ground.
Slowest exit velocity, hitters
Stephen Vogt's groundout off Roberto Osuna, 40.09 MPH
If Stephen Vogt's groundball were driving on the freeway, you'd honk, swerve around it, and flip it off. On a later date, Yonder Alonso reached base on a bunt single that was a whole .2 MPH slower than Vogt's groundout. Statcast is awesome, and also the source of some numerical hilarity.
Longest homeruns, Khris Davis edition
1. 449.36 foot dinger off Verlander
The bomb that keeps on giving, Davis's dinger was just a shade under 450 feet. Statcast has ruined man's favorite pasttime of exaggerating length, but I think we should all put aside our differences to pretend Statcast is wrong on this one and agree it went a nice and round 450 feet.
Only 26 balls have broken the 450 mark this season in all of baseball. Remember when we wondered if Davis's power would translate to Oakland?
2. 448.08 foot bomb of Martin Perez
I think I'm in love with Khris Davis.
3. 442.55 foot shot off Nathan Karns
There are many things to love about Davis, but number one might be his awkward homerun trot. His helmet always sags so he has to look up to see forward, not unlike a little leaguer. His arms undulate like they're gelatinous blobs sewn to his body. Makes my day, every time.
Longest dinger, non Khris Davis division
1. Danny Valencia's 437.74 foot homer off Cole Hamels
If you're going to swing 3-0, you damn well better make some serious contact. Valencia swung 3-0 on Tuesday and deposited the ball in the left field bleachers with a casual 100 feet or so to spare. That's 3-0 done right.
2. Valencia, 436.77 feet off Jake Odirizzi
You know what's impressive about both Davis/Valencias dingers on these lists? Most are off some pretty dang good pitchers. Odirizzi is no star, but he's a solid pitcher on a good club. Valencia don't discriminate, though, as he nearly took the dome off the Trop.
Longest dinger, pitcher edition
1. Ramirez's 468 foot blast in Fenway off Manaea
Goodness, I'm not sure I've ever seen a ball hit like that off an Athletic. If that was hit in the Coliseum, there's plexiglass everywhere and we'd have yet another weird Oakland specific delay.
2. Eric Hosmer's 440.05 foot shot off Sean Doolittle
Remember when we were all freaked out about Doo? He's looked great as of late, but he sure was homerun happy for a bit. Hosmer's dinger was especially painful because it was a close game and his face makes me angry, but Doo is settled now and somehow, that ball didn't do any structural damage to our beloved stadium.
Hope you enjoyed the walk down Statcast alley as much as I did, save Eric Hosmer's face. Statcast is an endless source of baseball fun, and you should totally check out the numerous other features it has to offer. We'll check back in as the season wears on to see just how far Khris Davis is crushing dingers!