Shohei Ohtani smashes 493-foot homer to break record in Angels loss

Shohei Ohtani looks up and reacts after hitting a deep home run during the Angels'  loss
Shohei Ohtani (17) reacts after hitting a home run in the sixth inning of the Angels’ loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks in Anaheim on Friday. (Ashley Landis/Associated Press)

Shohei Ohtani is that guy.

Late in round six, Ohtani sent Tommy Henry’s one-and-zero slider 493 feet into Angel Stadium Friday night.

It was the deepest home run of Ohtani’s career, topping the 470-foot shot he hit against the Kansas City Royals on June 8, 2021, at Angel Stadium.

“I hear about all these 500-[foot] shots that guys have hit in the past. I don’t think I’ll ever see one because if I see a shot further than the one I saw tonight,” manager Phil Nevin said. “The calculations before and now are different, but I don’t think there’s a ball that can be hit further than that.


The shot added to Ohtani’s growing list of professional accomplishments. In addition to leading all of baseball with 30 homers, he’s hit 15 of those hits this month. His June 15 homers put him in a four-way tie for most in the American League home runs hit in the month.

The other three? Babe Ruth (1930), Bob Johnson (1934) and Roger Maris (1961).

Ohtani also joined Sammy Sosa as the only other player to hit 30 homers and steal 10 bases before July. Sosa did it in 1998.

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Ohtani’s Friday night home run was the most hit at a major league park this season. Giancarlo Stanton of the New York Yankees hit a home run in April that was called 485 feet.

“He’s just, like, one of the strongest humans on Earth,” said pitcher Patrick Sandoval, who watched the Ohtani homer in awe with the rest of the team in the dugout. “It’s a surprise, but at the same time it’s not a surprise. It’s “wow”, but we often find ourselves saying “wow”.

Ohtani’s shot traveled so far and disappeared so quickly that after the game several members of the media were still debating where the ball actually landed.

And across baseball, there was a clash. Dodgers manager Dave Roberts told The Times’ Mike DiGiovanna after learning of the home run: “He’s not human…he’s an android.”

Ohtani followed up the bombshell by scoring again late in the eighth inning, after Anthony Rendon – who returned from the injured list ahead of Friday’s game – was taken out.

Friday’s loss came to Angels starter Griffin Canning, who allowed five earned runs on three hits, four walks and nine strikeouts in six innings.

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Most of the damage happened early in the second set, when Canning surrendered a grand slam to Lourdes Gurriel Jr. After the grand slam, Canning didn’t allow another run to score.

“My college coach used to call him a ‘bloody nose thrower,'” Canning said after the game. “You get punched in the face and you’re kind of ready to go compete. A bit of that tonight, but that’s the way it is.

Added Canning of Ohtani’s home run: “It was like Barry Bonds territory in the World Series.”

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This story originally appeared in the Los Angeles Times.

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