Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Marcus Stroman is noted for his saying “Height Doesn’t Measure Heart,” often shortened to HDMH. Stroman created the saying as motivation for himself due to his lack of height, which he is listed at being 5’8’’. On Thursday night, Stroman added another milestone to his already impressive career.
In the top of the fourth, Stroman stepped to the plate against Atlanta Braves ace Julio Teheran, and left with his first career home run. He took a 0-2, 91 mile-per-hour fastball the other way, clearing the right center field wall. According to ESPN Stats and Info, his home run came off the bat at 100.8 miles-per-hour. While height doesn’t measure home runs, Statcast does, and calculated his dinger traveled 388 feet. It was his first home run since his freshman year at Duke University back in 2010.
Stroman’s home run was also the second home run by a Blue Jays pitcher since the team formed in 1977. Mark Hendrickson was the first to do so in 2003 against the Montreal Expos. Hendrickson is also notable for his height, listed as 6’9’’, over a foot taller than Stroman. Hendrickson is the third tallest player in Major League Baseball history. He also played seven seasons in the NBA in addition to his 11 in the Majors. He is one of 12 players to play in both the NBA and MLB.
Marcus Stroman is also the first pitcher listed 5’8’’ or shorter to hit a home run in a Major League game since Baltimore Orioles pitcher Tom Phoebus did so in 1968. Phoebus had a pretty incredible 1968, taking Jim Kaat deep and pitching a no-hitter against the Boston Red Sox.
Marcus Stroman has been proving people wrong ever since his high school days on Long Island. He has had a great start to his Major League career, and his explosive stuff can keep him around for a few years. Hopefully he can continue to add to his career home run total.