Francisco goes (very) deep

In the 2nd inning vs. the Cubs,  Juan Francisco took Rodrigo Lopez’s 1-2 pitch very very deep into the night. The ball traveled an estimated 502 feet for a solo homer — the second longest distance in Great American Ball Park history. While other homers have left GABP, this ball was the first to ever clear the moon deck before it landed on the south side of Mehring Way. Jim Day of FS Ohio found the piece of a tree that snapped off from being struck by the drive. Day reported that the ball was retrieved by a person from Rozzi fireworks outside the stadium, who has returned it to the club to give to Francisco.

The ball from Juan Francisco's 502 foot homer. (Courtesy of Rick Walls from the Reds Hall of Fame)

The top 10 home run distances in GABP history:

1. Adam Dunn, 535 ft, 8/10/04 vs LAD
2. Juan Francisco, 502 ft, 9/12/11 vs. CHC
3. Wily Mo Pena, 498 ft., 4/17/05 vs. HOU
4. Reggie Abercrombie (FLA), 493 ft, 4/19/06  vs. CIN
5. Alfonso Soriano (WAS), 492 ft, 5/9/06 vs CIN
6. Derrek Lee (CHC), 482 ft,  4/18/05 vs. CIN
T7. Ryan Howard (PHI), 479 ft, 4/5/08 vs CIN
T7. Adam Dunn, 479 ft, 4/6/06 vs. PIT
9. Albert Pujols (STL), 477 ft., 8/31/03 vs. CIN
10. Adam Dunn, 474 ft., 5/4/05 vs. STL

*Francisco’s HR was the longest hit in the Majors this season, topping a 486-foot shot by Prince Fielder of the Brewers.

*The Dunn 535 ft homer was the only one to reach the Ohio River. It cleared the center field batter’s eye in the days before the riverboat was top of it.


Mark, what’s your assessmant of Francisco’s defense at 3B? Can he play everyday? Could next year’s Opening Day lineup include Alonso in LF, Sappelt in CF, Cozart at SS, Francisco at 3B abd Mesoraco behind the plate? Is that something to hope for?

Francisco has been OK there but he’d be a big drop off from a healthy Rolen. I wouldn’t put Sappelt in CF over Stubbs, who is far superior defensively and even with the strikeouts, a better bet offensively. Sappelt doesn’t have a very good arm, among other things.

Thanks, Mark.

The ESPN homerun tracker indicates his ball at 482.. Why do the Reds keep saying it is 502?

Good question. I saw that too. Not sure how ESPN measures it, especially off site. Until I hear from someone official at MLB or the Reds, I’m staying with 502 feet.

For sure, 20 feet is a big difference for a “margin of error”, I hope he gets his due if it is over 500…

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