After attacking Juan Soto low and away with back-to-back fastballs and getting up 0-2, Detroit Tigers’ lefty Daniel Norris tried to come up and in on the Washington Nationals’ slugger, who hit the 91 MPH heater he got around 418 feet to right in Comerica Park.
Norris acknowledged the obvious, that the pitch was a mistake.
“I slipped and threw it right down the middle and he hit it out of the stadium,” Norris told reporters in Detroit.
Soto’s 14th home run of the 2019 campaign gave the Nats a 1-0 lead early in what ended up a 3-1 win on the road. It also extended the 20-year-old outfielder’s on-base streak to 13 in-a-row.
Soto said his approach in the at bat was the same as it is in any other plate appearance.
“For me, just try to make contact with the ball,” Soto said, as quoted by MASN’s Byron Kerr.
“Try to be short and explosive to the ball and look for a good pitch. And always looking for my fastball. He tried to surprise me and I’m always ready for that.”
Adam Eaton drove in a run in the fifth, 2-0, and after the Tigers cut that lead in half, Howie Kendrick hit an RBI double in the eighth, driving Soto in from first after a two-out walk, 3-1.
With the win in the first of three with the Tigers, the Nationals went a game over .500 at 41-40 at the halfway point in the 2019 campaign.
“It’s a lot of fun because we’ve come from the bottom,” Soto said, as quoted by MLB.com’s Jamal Collier. “So now we’re up here, and we’re feeling really good.”
“We talked about this the other day,” manager Davey Martinez said when asked about the importance of going over .500.
“For me it’s just one more win. And let’s just keep going. The boys are playing well. There’s a lot excitement going on right now, so just get some rest, we got in late last night, get some rest and be ready to go at it tomorrow.”