The famous saying goes “chicks dig the long ball”, but everyone digs the REALLY long ball. I’m talking about mammoth shots, no doubt home runs that leave the hitter’s bat with a deafening sound and take flight into the atmosphere like a rocket being launched from Cape Canaveral.
Thanks to ESPN’s Home Run Tracker resource, we can locate the longest of the long balls in Washington Nationals’ history (at least from 2006 forward, as the data base only goes back to that season). Here’s rundown of the ten longest round-trippers in Nats’ history:
#10- Marlon Anderson- June 29, 2006 at Toronto- 465 feet
Anderson was a 12 year Major League ballplayer who was known more for his speed and versatility than his power. Of his 63 Major League home runs, five came in the 2006 season for Washington where he played until a trade deadline deal send Anderson to the Dodgers.
On June 29, 2006, Anderson unleashed a laser beam blast to right field off of Blue Jays’ ace Roy Halladay that shocked both the talented hurler and a Rogers Centre crowd. Unfortunately for the Nats, Anderson’s heroics (he also hit a long home run to center field off of Halladay in the contest), could not prevent an 8-4 Blue Jays victory.
#9- Michael Morse- July 20, 2012 at Nationals Park- 465 feet
The 6’5, 245 pound slugger was one of the Nationals’ fan favorites during the early part of the decade, and Morse’s three run blast to center off of Atlanta’s Tommy Hansen is the longest home run ever hit at Nationals Park by a hometown player. Morse clubbed 67 home runs in his time in DC, and fans loved when “Beast Mode” was on display.
Morse’s homer started the Nationals off on the right foot against their divisional rival on this Friday night in the Nation’s Capital, but Atlanta rallied for a shocking 11-10 win to take some of the luster off of Morse’s bomb. The good news for the Nats in 2012, of course, is that they had the last laugh as they emerged as NL East Champions and made the post-season for the first time in team history.
#8 Adam Dunn- May 9, 2009 at Chase Field- 466 feet
Chase Field is known as a hitter’s park, and that made the facility prime hunting grounds for the massive Nats’ slugger. After homering in the first game of the series the night before, Dunn connected on a 3-2 pitch off of Doug Davis and homered deep into centerfield to give Washington a 1-0 second inning lead.
A homer later in the game by Ryan Zimmerman would give the Nats the eventual winning run, but the highlight of the game remained Dunn’s Ruthian clout off of Davis.
#7- Adam Dunn- May 10, 2009 at Chase Field- 466 feet
Dunn continued his red-hot weekend with two homers off of Arizona’s Max Scherzer in the series finale, one that traveled as far as his home run from the day before. Arizona won 10-8 in a slugfest.
#6- Michael Morse- August 9, 2011 at Wrigley Field- 466 feet
Morse had a career high 31 homers for Washington in 2011, with none traveling farther than his booming shot to center field off of Matt Garza in the top of the sixth inning to break a scoreless tie. Washington would go on to win the game by a 3-1 score.
#5- Ian Desmond- August 15, 2015 at AT&T Park- 470 feet
(USA TODAY photo)
Quieting a packed house of Giants’ fans at AT&T Park, especially on a Saturday evening, is not an easy task. Washington’s Ian Desmond did so, at least temporarily, on August 15th of last season when the slugging shortstop drove a Jake Peavy pitch deep into left-center for a no doubter of a home run. The Giants and their fans would be feeling later however, as the defending World Series Champs rallied for a 12-6 victory.
#4- Adam Dunn- May 15, 2010 at Coors Field- 471 feet
Pitching against a slugger like Dunn in Coors Field is not an easy task, something that Ubaldo Jiminez found out first hand on May 15, 2010. Dunn slugged two homers against Jiminez on the day, one landing in the top deck of the large stadium 471 away from home plate.
Dunn’s power surge was the highlight of an otherwise miserable day for Washington that saw the Nats drop both games of a day/night twinbill to Colorado.
#3- Adam Dunn- July 29. 2009 at Miller Park- 473 feet
(Washington Nationals/MLB photo)
It’s lucky this moon shot was hit to right center instead of left center where Bernie Brewer resides as the affable mascot would have been in harm’s way if the homer had been hit toward him. Dunn’s fourth inning clout off of Milwaukee’s Carlos Villanueva ended up leaving the ballpark and helped spark the Nats to an 8-3 victory over the Brew Crew.
#2- Adam Dunn, September 14, 2010 at Turner Field- 479 feet
Dunn hit 76 homers in his two seasons in Washington, and he saved his longest for the final month of his tenure in DC. His 479 foot round-tripper against Jair Jurrjens scattered fans in right center and helped Washington to a 6-0 win over the Braves.
#1- Michael A. Taylor, August 20, 2015 at Coors Field- 479 feet
Michael A. Taylor may be built more like an NBA shooting guard than like lumbering power hitters such as Dunn and Morse, but don’t let his slight frame and his youthful appearance fool you; he has top level power. That power was on display on an otherwise uneventful night in Denver when he drove a Yohan Flande pitch 479 feet into the seats in left center in a game Washington would end up losing by a 3-2 count.