Watch Justin Upton hit a baseball that landed 477 feet from home plate (Video)

We’re not even a month into the new Major League Baseball season, but we’ve already seen a few impressive home runs launched.

justin-upton-home-runLast week, Giancarlo Stanton turned a pitch by Eric Stults into a 484-ft blast to left field. Yesterday, Bryce Harper deposited a three-run homer into the upper deck at Nations Park.

Against the New York Mets on Thursday, it was Justin Upton’s turn to get into the act.

In the bottom of the third inning, the younger of baseball’s Upton brothers hit his second home run of the game. The first went a modest 379 feet. The second, almost one hundred feet further.

Upton’s prodigious clout is currently the second-longest home run of the young season behind the one mentioned above by Giancarlo Stanton, which you should take a look at.

This is the look of a man who just served up a 477-ft home run.

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The Milwaukee Brewers made their own ‘Happy’ music video

Since America got its first listen of Pharrell Williams’ “Happy”, it has become one of the country’s most popular songs.

brewers-happyBecause it’s what happens when we fall in love with a song, seemingly everyone wants to use it.

“Happy” can be found playing in the background of a commercial for the Fiat 500L as well as one for the Beats by Dre Pill mini-speakers.

The Milwaukee Brewers have now jumped on board, releasing their own music video which features Ryan Braun, Carlos Gomez, Yovani Gallardo, Rickie Weeks, Bernie Brewer, and legendary broadcaster Bob Uecker playing a trumpet.

There’s a decent chance you may be tired of “Happy” before long. Until then, you can watch these few moments it produced.

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Share photos on twitter with Twitpic

Share photos on twitter with Twitpic

Mike Schmidt wants ‘force field’ calling balls and strikes, not umpires

Mike-SchmidtPhiladelphia Phillies legend Mike Schmidt is tired of seeing umpires screw up balls and strikes. Bad calls at the plate are as old as the game of baseball, but do they have to be? We have had technology like the K-zone for quite some time, so it couldn’t be that difficult to have a computer determine balls and strikes.

What would be difficult, however, is using a force field to call balls and strikes. A force field (is that even a real thing?) is used to keep things out of a certain area.

“I think the umpire at home plate should not call balls and strikes,” Schmidt told Harry Mayes and John Marks on 97.5 The Fanatic on Thursday. “I think they should have a force field over home plate and if the pitcher throws and the ball touches the force field a little bell goes off and it’s a strike.”

Schmidt believes computerized balls and strikes would help speed up the game.

“That would expand the strike zone to the point where the hitters would now have to swing the ball, which would shorten the game,” the Hall of Famer said. “The umpire needs to be at home plate for the safe and out calls at home plate and foul balls and fair balls and basically to run the game but we’re going to see at some time — my guess is within the next 10 years – that you’ll see the balls and strikes just like the line calls in tennis.”

I’m not sure I agree with that. Judging by most of the games I’ve seen, I’d say it’s more common for a pitch that is outside the strike zone to be called a strike than it is for one that’s in the strike zone to be called a ball. If a computer was making the calls, players wouldn’t have to swing at anything that was even a fraction of an inch off the plate. Wouldn’t that mean more walks, deeper counts and longer plate appearances?

All that said, this probably will happen at some point. Technology always seems to win over the “human element,” and there’s no reason to think baseball will be any different in the long run.

H/T Hardball Talk

Did Ryan Braun taunt Phillies fans after big hit? (GIF)

Ryan-Braun-taunts-PhilliePhiladelphia Phillies fans have been giving it to Ryan Braun over the past two days, and it is not bothering the Milwaukee Brewers slugger one bit. On Tuesday, Braun belted three home runs and drove in seven in a 10-4 win over Philadelphia. He then had a two-run triple in the eighth inning on Wednesday night that put the Phillies away.

Some are claiming Braun taunted the crowd at Citizens Bank Park after his latest timely hit. When he reached third, the scorned slugger made a gesture in the direction of the Brewers’ dugout. He claims he was simply acknowledging his teammates.

“No [it was directed] to our dugout, we always do that when we get big hits,” Braun said with a smirk, according to CSNPhilly.com’s Corey Seidman. “We’ve done that forever, we just haven’t had an opportunity to play too many good games, close games, exciting games.”

If Braun was making the motion across the diamond, that would be easier to believe. Maybe I’m reading into it too much, but his hands started pretty high up when he made the gesture. He then pointed them down toward the dugout. Also, Braun is a liar.

H/T The 700 Level
GIF via gfycat.com

Andrelton Simmons makes incredible throw from his knees (Video)

Andrelton-Simmons-throwAtlanta Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons showed off some of the most incredible arm strength you will ever see on Wednesday night. During the second inning of Atlanta’s 4-3 win over the New York Mets, Simmons lost his balance while making a backhanded play in the hole between shortstop and third base. He still somehow managed to throw out Travis d’Arnaud at first.

Freddie Freeman made a great stretch on the other end to complete what was a phenomenal play all around. Replays appeared to show that d’Arnaud actually beat the throw, but we almost always see umpires give the fielder the benefit of the doubt when they make a play like that.

But what about instant replay? With the new replay rules that are in place, Mets manager Terry Collins could have challenged the play. Considering there were two outs in the second inning and he had the bottom of the order coming up, Collins didn’t bother. I wouldn’t be surprised if he was also being respectful of a great play.

Adam Jones: Masahiro Tanaka should be asked about facing me, not other way around

Masahiro-Tanaka-YankeesBaltimore Orioles center fielder Adam Jones seems legitimately offended by the hype surrounding New York Yankees starting pitcher Masahiro Tanaka. As many of you know, Tanaka was a perfect 24-0 with a 1.27 ERA in Japan last season. The Yankees liked what they saw enough to sign him to a $155 million contract. Jones is not impressed.

Prior to Wednesday’s Yankees-O’s game, Jones was asked if he has any thoughts on facing Tanaka. He seemed like he had rehearsed for the question.

“Why don’t you ask Tanaka about me? I’m the one who’s been over here in the major leagues for a while,” Jones said, per Steven Marcus of Newsday. “Congratulations, he did it over there. Don’t make it like he’s the dirtiest guy in the world. He was 24-0-in Japan.

“At the end of the day, we’ve got to judge it off major-league hitters, not the Japanese hitters. We’re a little bit better over here as hitters…”

Jones faced Tanaka three times on Wednesday, striking out twice and hitting a single. Tanaka ended up with a no decision after pitching seven solid innings of seven-hit, three-run ball and striking out 10. Jones was equally annoyed when asked about the righthander after his team’s 5-4 win over New York.

“Am I [supposed] to go home and say I faced Tanaka tonight?” he asked, according to Newday’s Anthony Rieber. “Just go throw a party that I faced Tanaka? It’s another pitcher. Another pitcher in the rotation. Nothing special to me. It’s just another guy that we have to go through to get to where we want to be.”

When you put up those kinds of numbers and sign a $155 million contract, you’re going to get all kinds of publicity — no matter what country you came from. Jones has been in the league long enough to know that.

H/T NJ.com’s Brendan Kuty

Jayson Werth burns Marlins for grand slam after intentional walk, does great bat flip (Video)

Jayson Werth home runJayson Werth must have been pretty ticked off after the Miami Marlins intentionally walked young second baseman Anthony Rendon to load up the bases in the 8th and bring him up to the plate, because he burned them for a grand slam and gave a mean bat flip afterwards.

Werth entered the game without a home run or RBI on the season, so maybe Marlins manager Mike Redmond felt he could get away with one, but the move backfired in a big way.

Redmond should have known better; if you have Carlos Marmol pitching, you never want to put on any more runners than is necessary.

Now let’s look at this great bat flip on loop: