I’m sure I speak for many of us in saying that we cannot forget the 2023 Yankees season fast enough. To miss the playoffs for the first time in eight years and narrowly avoid their first losing season and last-place finish in 30 years is beyond unacceptable for an organization whose outward-facing mission is to contend for a title every year. Outside of Gerrit Cole’s Cy Young campaign, there is precious little about the recently completed campaign on which we can look back fondly.
With two of the league’s most prodigious sluggers, at least we can always count on a handful of tape measure moonshots by which to remember the season, so we’ve compiled the five longest Bomber blasts of 2023. Two of the entrants on this list should be obvious to everyone; however we have a shock-holder of the second-longest bomb of the season, so stick around to find out.
5. Giancarlo Stanton - 455 feet (7/14 vs. Rockies)
Giancarlo Stanton had a downright miserable 2023 campaign, posting the first below-average offensive season (89 wRC+) of his 14-year big league career. That being said, there is still no one in baseball who hits the ball harder or farther than he does when he really barrels one up, so it should come as no surprise that he contributed two of the five longest home runs hit by Yankees this season.
The first game back from the All-Star break turned out to be a harbinger of things to come in the Yankees’ second half. They fell to the 103-loss Rockies at Coors, 7-2, with Carlos Rodón turning in the first of many stinkers. That being said, they actually grabbed the first lead of the game, as Gleyber led off the contest with a single to set up this 455-foot, two-run laser by Stanton.
They would fail to score in the final eight innings, but at least Stanton started his second-half (and Sean Casey’s brief stint as hitting coach) with a bang.
4. Aaron Judge - 462 feet (5/15 vs. Blue Jays)
Aaron Judge picked up the 2023 season right where the 2022 campaign left off. After breaking the AL home run record by mashing 62, Judge was once again on roughly a 62-home-run pace through the first few months — right up until he collided with the concrete facing below the Dodgers’ bullpen fence. It interrupted what was likely another historic, MVP-caliber season — one which might have seen him come close to the 11.6 fWAR he put up a year prior.
Before the injury, Judge was barreling up the ball more consistently than any hitter in baseball, and that certainly applied to this blast against Blue Jays reliever Jay Jackson.
It was Judge’s second tank job of the game after homering off Alek Manoah in the first. The 462-foot solo to extend the Yankees’ lead to 7-0 in the eighth created a bit of a stir, as the Blue Jays broadcast noted that Judge was glancing into the Yankees dugout before multiple pitches that AB. The Yankee captain’s cryptic response when asked about it after the game only increased the agita of non-Yankees fans, but the whole episode blew over by the end of the week (though Malachi got some amusing material out of it).
3. Aaron Judge - 464 feet (8/11 vs. Marlins)
It’s beyond impressive that Judge managed to hit 37 home runs in 106 games. He bludgeoned 18 in the 57 games after he returned from an almost two-month injury absence, none longer than this rocket against the Marlins.
The Yankees had already tagged Jesús Luzardo in the second, Anthony Volpe coming through with a three-run shot, but after the home team responded with a pair in the bottom-half, this 464-foot third inning solo shot from Judge padded his team’s cushion. They’d eventually go on to win, 9-4
2. Josh Donaldson - 472 feet (6/29 vs. Athletics)
Josh Donaldson’s unwelcome Yankees tenure came to a merciful end when the team released him on August 29th. Prior to his release and interrupted by a two-month long absence with a hamstring injury, the 37-year-old third baseman had one of the more bizarre stat lines you are likely to see. He had 15 hits in 106 at-bats for the Yankees in 2023 — good for a .142 average — but 10 of those 15 hits left the yard.
A day after Domingo Germán pitched the 24th perfect game in MLB history, the Yankees found themselves trailing the A’s, 3-2, heading into the sixth inning of the rubber match of the series. After a leadoff Harrison Bader single, Donaldson demolished this two-run moonshot to give his team their first lead of the contest.
At 472 feet, this home run was the longest of the 279 Donaldson has hit in his career. It also jumpstarted a massive rally for the Yankees, as they ended up scoring eight in the frame to win the game, 10-4, and take the series from Oakland.
1. Giancarlo Stanton - 485 feet (4/2 vs. Giants)
After being pipped to the longest home run of 2022 by Judge, Stanton reclaimed his spot atop the list of the longest blasts in 2023 with an absolute piss missile in the season-opening series against the Giants. After splitting the first two games of the season, the Yankees were looking for a strong performance to start their campaign off with a series win at home, and Stanton put them on track with this two-run rocket off Ross Stripling in the third, two batters after Judge launched a solo shot.
It’s the only ball I’ve ever seen hit over the black window facing of NYY Steak in dead center. At a projected 485 feet, it was the second-longest home run in MLB, trailing only Shohei Ohtani’s 493-foot tank against the Diamondbacks. Similarly, at 117.8 mph off the bat, it was also the sixth-hardest hit ball by a Yankee and sixth-hardest hit home run in MLB in 2023. With Judge and Stanton homering in an eventual 6-0 shutout victory to seal the season-opening series win, hope sprung eternal around the Yankees fanbase, only to be dashed in the coming months.