DENVER -- Rangel Ravelo had no idea how far he hit the ball in the top of the second inning on Thursday. All he knew was that he hit it out.
“I’m super happy about it, just to keep working hard and happy to help the team win,” Ravelo said. “When I hit it, I knew it was a home run. I hit it really well.”
Ravelo’s bomb is also the second-longest home run in the Majors this year, behind Rangers outfielder Nomar Mazara’s 505-foot home run on June 21. Thursday’s homer left Ravelo’s bat at 111.5 mph, according to Statcast.
“[He] took advantage of his opportunity, got a good swing off,” Cardinals manager Mike Shildt said. “That ball was well-hit, for sure. Good offensive day all the way around.”
The rookie first baseman put the Cards up 3-1 before Kolten Wong hit a sacrifice fly later in the second to give them a 4-1 lead. Ravelo joined in on St. Louis' homer party that Dexter Fowler and Wong began with back-to-back home runs to lead off the first inning. Ozuna and Harrison Bader joined in during the third and fourth innings, respectively.
Ravelo spent parts of 10 years and over 800 games in the Minor Leagues before being promoted to the Cardinals this season. So when he has the opportunity to play in the big leagues, he grabs hold of it.
On Wednesday, Ravelo pinch-hit in the ninth inning and smacked a 109-mph line drive right at the left fielder to end the game. On Thursday, he made sure no one could even attempt to catch his home run ball.
“I feel proud that every time I get the opportunity, I’ll be able to live up to it,” Ravelo said. “After all those years in the Minor Leagues, I feel really happy to get the opportunity and also be able to perform when the opportunity is given to me.”
The Cards are confident that Ravelo’s power can help spark their offense, whether it’s in the starting lineup or off the bench. No matter the situation, Ravelo will be able to give St. Louis “a professional at-bat,” Shildt said.
“There is not a situation that you can throw at him that he can’t think about and be able to put together a good at-bat to deliver,” Shildt said. “Every situation is a situation. A professional hitter is able to have an at-bat and have an approach regardless of it and be able to produce.”