Bo Jackson’s good name has been preserved.
On Friday night, Mike Trout obliterated a Jason Vargas pitch, hitting the ball into the fountains in center field. The Royals announced the ball had traveled 445 feet. Later, ESPN’s Home Run Tracker put the distance at 489 feet.
Although Johnny Bench clubbed a 480-foot shot in the 1973 All-Star Game, the Royals regular-season record for a home run was the 475-foot shot by Jackson, the former Royals outfielder, in 1986.
On Twitter, a passionate discussion ensued.
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Why the discrepancy? The Royals measure where the ball lands, while ESPN measures where the ball would have landed based on an uninterrupted path of travel back down to field level.
Naturally, fans wonder how far Jackson’s home run in 1986 would have traveled using ESPN’s calculation.
The answer: 495 feet, which beats Trout’s homer.
That, of course, is good news for noted Bo Jackson fan/Star columnist Sam Mellinger:
Even if Trout didn’t hit the longest homer in Kauffman/Royals Stadium history, it was still hit a tremendous distance.
In fact, the Royals amended their total for Trout’s no-doubt clout to 455 feet after a meticulous recalculation.