We know about storybook endings, but how about storybook beginnings? For now, 19-year-old Washington Nationals rookie Juan Soto is giving us the latter. Soto, promoted to the big leagues Sunday, homered Monday on the first pitch he saw in his first MLB start.
It’s not the worst way to start your MLB career, is it?
It came in the second inning off San Diego Padres pitcher Robbie Erlin with two men on base. It cleared the left-center fence and gave the Nats a 3-0 lead (They went on to win, 10-2). This was his second career at-bat, after pinch-hitting in Sunday’s game and striking out.
19 years old. Second career at-bat. First career home run.
Unbelievable, Juan Soto! pic.twitter.com/eqSbfiCuyz
— MLB (@MLB) May 21, 2018
Who is Juan Soto?
Soto became the youngest player in MLB when he was called up to the big leagues. He was the Nats’ No. 2 prospect and No. 15 overall in the league. What makes Soto’s story even more storybook is that he started the season in Single-A and played just eight games in Double-A before being called up to the majors.
In his rocket-like rise to the big leagues, Soto hit .362/.462/.757 with 14 homers and 52 RBIs in 39 games. Soto was signed by the Nats at age 16 out of the Dominican Republic.
Who was the last teenager to homer in the big leagues?
Rare are the times that teens homer in the big leagues. You might have heard of the last person to do what Soto did. Soto does too. His name is Bryce Harper and he’s Soto’s new teammates with the Nats.
— MLB Stat of the Day (@MLBStatoftheDay) May 21, 2018
Soto’s former teammates saw his homer and went nuts
Not long ago, Soto was playing at the Nationals academy in the Dominican Republic. On Monday night, many of Soto’s former academy teammates were watching the game. When he homered, they couldn’t contain their happiness.
The Nats put tonight’s game on for their youngsters at their academy in the Dominican Republic. If you thought this crowd went wild when Soto homered… well, this is pretty special. pic.twitter.com/SKROdB2oox
— Chelsea Janes (@chelsea_janes) May 22, 2018
Now that’s how you celebrate your friend’s first major league home run.
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