Like any typical year, baseball’s regular season and postseason were full of home runs for us to admire. As we’ll see soon enough, it wasn’t nearly as many as we’ve seen in the recent past. However, it was enough to keep us busy between April and November.
Cool stuff happens on the baseball field on a daily basis. To bring some of those things to life, we’ve compiled a list of 25 interesting stats and facts about home runs in 2022.
Home runs are down 23% compared to 2019. (The Sports Daily)
The 2022 season included 5,215 total home runs. Not including the pandemic-shortened 2020 campaign, this was the sixth straight season with at least 5,000 dingers. However, this is the lowest number the game has seen since 2015. After the league saw a record of 6,776 balls fly out of the yard in 2019, that number has decreased drastically.
7 MLB teams slugged 200-plus homers. (FanGraphs)
Here are the clubs who hit at least 200 homers during 2022:
- Yankees: 254
- Braves: 243
- Brewers: 219
- Astros: 214
- Dodgers: 212
- Phillies: 205
- Blue Jays: 200
In conjunction with the fact directly above, this is much lower than in recent years. As recently as 2019, there were 24 (!) teams who hit 200-plus homers. This included the Yankees and Twins both going over 300 dingers. That number was cut in half to 12 in 2021 before nearly getting cut in half again in 2022.
4 MLB hitters slugged 40-plus homers. (FanGraphs)
Aaron Judge (62) and Kyle Schwarber (46) led the American League and National League, respectively, in homers this year. Pete Alonso (40) and Mike Trout (40) were the only other hitters to join them in the 40-homer club. There hasn’t been that few since 2018 when Khris Davis (48), J.D. Martinez (43), and Joey Gallo (40) were the only ones to accomplish it.
23 players reached the 30-homer plateau. (FanGraphs)
If this doesn’t feel like a lot to you, it’s because it’s the fewest number of players to slug at least 30 homers in a season since 2015. Here’s what each of the full seasons have looked like:
- 2021: 42
- 2019: 58
- 2018: 27
- 2017: 41
- 2016: 38
- 2015: 20
The longest home run traveled 504 feet. (OnlyHomers)
The longest average home run distance was 428 feet. (Baseball Savant)
This was accomplished by Ronald Acuña Jr. He may have only hit 15 homers in 2022, but he sure did make them count.
The shortest home run traveled 271 feet. (OnlyHomers)
This was accomplished on July 11th by Josh H. Smith of the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Park. This was also his first career MLB homer.
The home run with the highest launch angle was 48 degrees. (OnlyHomers)
Anthony Rizzo accomplished this for the Yankees on April 26th at Yankee Stadium. It was part of a three-homer game for the first baseman.
The home run with the lowest launch angle was 12 degrees. (OnlyHomers)
Sam Haggerty of the Seattle Mariners accomplished this on July 14th. This inside-the-parker traveled just 288 feet. The homer with the lowest launch angle that left the building was a 14-degree shot on August 31st by Xander Bogaerts at Target Field. It went 392 feet and had an exit velocity of 113 miles per hour.
Jack Suwinski’s historic three-homer game. (Sarah Langs)
Pirates rookie Jack Suwinski enjoyed a three-homer performance on June 19th. This included a walk-off dinger, making him the first rookie to accomplish both of those feats in one game.
Pirates hit the trifecta for three-homer games in one month. (ESPN Stats & Info)
Shohei Ohtani’s brilliance knows no bounds. (MLB)
Aaron Judge’s pace was impeccable. (Buster Olney)
Back on June 12th, Aaron Judge was on pace to slash .313/.388/.681 with 66 homers, 132 RBI, 137 runs scored, 80 walks, and 187 hits. Once the year was done, the outfielder had compiled a .311/.425/.688 line with 62 homers, 131 RBI, 133 runs scored, 111 walks, and 177 hits.
Mike Trout adds himself to another exclusive list. (Buster Olney)
During his seven-game home run streak, Trout posted a 1.648 OPS with 11 RBI and 10 runs scored. He came within one game of the record for most consecutive games with a dinger.
A different kind of 40/40 club. (Christopher Kamka)
Lots of homers and not a lot of RBI. (Baseball-Reference)
Along with his 40 homers, Trout drove in just 80 runs. It was the second time he slugged at least 40 dingers in a year without collecting more than 90 RBI. It also happened in 2015 (41 homers, 90 RBI). He’s the only player ever to do this more than once.
The Machine has some company. (ESPN Stats & Info)
Mets first baseman Pete Alonso slugged 40 homers with 27 doubles in 2022. He joins Albert Pujols as the only players to have 35-plus homers and 25-plus doubles in three of their first four seasons. And, the one time it didn’t happen for Alonso was in 2020, which was a 60-game season.
Some first-year history. (Mariners PR)
Julio Rodriguez‘s first taste of big-league action included 28 homers and 25 stolen bases. He’s the first player ever to finish with more than 25 in each category during his debut season.
Twice is nice… x2. (Sarah Langs)
Julio Rodriguez and Michael Harris faced off against one another in the same game on September 11th. They each enjoyed two-homer performances. It’s the first time that’s happened with two players at the age of 21 or younger.
A first in Los Angeles. (ESPN Stats & Info)
Mookie Betts finished his season with 35 home runs and 40 doubles for the Dodgers. It’s the first time someone has reached at least 35 in both categories since Duke Snider in 1954. When Snider accomplished this feat, the Dodgers were still in Brooklyn.
An April power outage. (MLB Random Stats)
On April 17th, a total of just 15 homers were hit across 14 MLB games. That was the fewest of any day with that many games since September 24th, 2014. It was the fewest of any April day with that many games since April 28th, 1993.
Consistency, thy name is Albert. (Jim Passon)
With 24 homers in his final season, it was Albert Pujols‘ 21st year with 15-plus homers. That tied Barry Bonds for the most in MLB history. The only time he didn’t reach 15? It was the shortened 2020 season when he hit six.
No cheap ones off Yordan’s bat. (Sarah Langs)
On September 16th, Yordan Alvarez enjoyed a three-homer night. His average distance for those three homers was 443 feet. That’s the second-longest average during the Statcast era. Only Trevor Story‘s 454-foot average distance in 2018 is better.
First-pitch ambush…x2. (MLB Random Stats)
On April 23rd, Jazz Chisholm Jr. and Ozzie Albies both hit leadoff homers on the first pitch they saw. It was just the second time that’s happened since 1960. The other time was in 2021 by Miguel Rojas and Jonathan Villar.
Andrew Vaughn’s two different kinds of history. (Christopher Kamka)
Andrew Vaughn led the White Sox with 17 homers in 2022. That’s the fewest dingers to lead Chicago in a single season since 1989. However, he also led the squad with 76 RBI. At 24 years old, he’s the youngest White Sox hitter to lead the team in both categories since Frank Thomas did it in 1991 as a 23-year-old.