When Jason Heyward signed a $184 million deal with the Chicago Cubs a few winters back, expectations were sky-high for the right fielder. Sadly, as most even the most casual baseball fans have probably heard, things haven’t gone great for Heyward since.
That is, until this season. Heyward has been hitting much better here in 2018 and even had that one, huge, defining moment that seemed to be absent from his quiet Cubs career: a walk-off grand slam at Wrigley Field.
Well, Giancarlo Stanton’s picture in New York wasn’t nearly as bleak or long-lasting as Heyward’s in Chicago, but a very slow start with no defining or “signature” moment combined with sky-high expectations and a massive contract amounted to “boos” on more than one occasion in New York.
But last night, Stanton, like Heyward before him, got his big moment: a massive (and I do mean massive), walk-off two-run home run in the bottom of the ninth inning with two outs and two strikes at Yankee Stadium:
Giancarlo Stanton gets his signature Yankees moment with this home run to win the game. pic.twitter.com/YIjuIAN9Dj
— YES Network (@YESNetwork) June 21, 2018
In typical Stanton fashion, that homer traveled over 450 feet and left the bat at a ridiculous 117.9 MPH. Funnily enough, that was the second 117.9 MPH home run he hit this year, and both are tied for the second-hardest homer of the 2018 season.
The leader, of course … a 119.3 MPH Stanton blast from June 6.
Although it might’ve seemed like a slow start for the Yankees slugger, he is actually hitting quite well (.272/.340/.517) stretching all the way back to April 10. And now that he’s got that “big moment” to lean on, I’m guessing Yankees fans will start to better appreciate what they’ve got.