Shohei Ohtani Crushes MLB Season's Fastest Homer at 118.7 MPH

Dodgers' Shohei Ohtani sets new MLB speed record

by Nouman Rasool
Shohei Ohtani Crushes MLB Season's Fastest Homer at 118.7 MPH
© Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Los Angeles Dodgers’ phenom Shohei Ohtani continues to dazzle fans with his extraordinary ability, not only as a designated hitter but also as a future pitching star. On a recent night in Washington D.C., Ohtani stepped up to the plate against the Nationals and delivered a performance for the ages, smashing the hardest-hit ball of the 2024 MLB season so far.

His powerful swing sent a 1-0 splitter from Nationals’ pitcher Matt Barnes soaring an impressive 450 feet. This remarkable homer wasn’t just another statistic; it rocketed off Ohtani’s bat at a blistering 118.7 miles per hour, setting a new benchmark for the season.

This achievement outpaced the previous record holders, Fernando Tatis Jr. of the San Diego Padres and Giancarlo Stanton of the New York Yankees, whose best efforts had peaked at 116.7 mph.

Ohtani's Record-Breaking Performance

The magnitude of Ohtani’s latest feat is underscored by several historic benchmarks.

According to revered sports statistician Sarah Langs, this homer not only stands as the hardest-hit ball by any Dodger since the Statcast era began in 2015 but also marks the hardest-hit home run in Ohtani’s illustrious MLB career.

Furthermore, it ranks as the twelfth hardest-hit ball of the Statcast era, postseason included. The home run was a key component in the Dodgers’ 4-1 victory over the Nationals, emphasizing Ohtani’s critical role in the team’s success.

Despite not pitching in 2024 as he recovers from elbow surgery, Ohtani’s offensive prowess remains undiminished. His performance so far this season is exceptional, with a batting average of .364, an on-base percentage of .430, and a slugging percentage of .612, including six home runs.

Ohtani’s knack for powerful hitting isn’t new. Entering Tuesday’s game, he boasted a career-best average exit velocity of 95.0 mph, positioning him in the top 2% of the league. Additionally, his hard-hit rate of 61% places him among the elite, in the 99th percentile of MLB hitters.

As the Dodgers look to maintain their competitive edge, Ohtani’s robust contributions at the plate are more vital than ever. His seamless blend of skill, power, and consistency not only captivates fans but also significantly bolsters the Dodgers’ lineup, proving that even without pitching, he remains a formidable force in major league baseball.

Shohei Ohtani Dodgers