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Peter Morgan Alonso (born December 7, 1994), nicknamed "Polar Bear",[1][2][3] is an American professional baseball first baseman for the New York Mets of Major League Baseball (MLB). He made his MLB debut during the 2019 season and became the first Mets player to hit 50 or more home runs in a season. In doing so, he set the Mets' single-season home run record and also set the major league record for most home runs by a rookie in a season.

Pete Alonso
Pete Alonso (46584096435) (cropped).jpg
Alonso with the Mets at Nationals Park in 2019
New York Mets – No. 20
First baseman
Born: (1994-12-07) December 7, 1994 (age 24)
Tampa, Florida
Bats: Right Throws: Right
MLB debut
March 28, 2019, for the New York Mets
MLB statistics
(through 2019 season)
Batting average.260
Home runs53
Runs batted in120
Teams
Career highlights and awards

MLB records

  • Most home runs in a rookie season (53)

Early lifeEdit

Alonso was born to Michelle and Peter Matthew Alonso in Tampa, Florida. His paternal grandfather, Peter Conrad Alonso, fled his hometown of Barcelona during the Spanish Civil War and settled in Queens, New York.[4]

Alonso attended Jesuit High School in Tampa for his first two years of high school, and transferred to Henry B. Plant High School in Tampa to finish high school.[5][6] He played lacrosse and football as a freshman before quitting to focus solely on baseball.[7] For the baseball team, he was a third baseman.[8] He enrolled at the University of Florida, where he played college baseball for the Florida Gators as a first baseman.[8] He was named All-Southeastern Conference in his freshman year.[6] In 2016, his junior year, he hit .374/.469/.659 with 14 home runs and 60 RBIs in 58 games.[9] He competed for Florida in the 2015 and 2016 College World Series.[10] He also used to play for the collegiate team the Madison Mallards.

Professional careerEdit

Minor leaguesEdit

The New York Mets selected Alonso in the second round, with the 64th overall selection, of the 2016 Major League Baseball draft.[8][11] He signed with the Mets for a $909,200 signing bonus,[12] and spent 2016 with the Brooklyn Cyclones of the Class A-Short Season New York-Penn League, where he posted a .322 batting average with five home runs and 21 RBIs in thirty games. He was chosen to participate in the league's All-Star Game.[13] He began the 2017 season with the St. Lucie Mets of the Class A-Advanced Florida State League, and after batting .286 with 16 home runs and 58 RBIs in 82 games, was promoted to the Binghamton Rumble Ponies of the Class AA Eastern League in August,[14] where he batted .311 with two home runs and five RBIs in 11 games.[15]

 
Alonso batting for the Las Vegas 51s in 2018

MLB.com ranked Alonso as New York's fourth best prospect going into the 2018 season.[16] He began the 2018 season in Binghamton,[17] and received a midseason promotion to the Las Vegas 51s of the Class AAA Pacific Coast League. He represented the Mets in the 2018 All-Star Futures Game.[18] In 132 games between Binghamton and Las Vegas, he slashed .285/.395/.579 with 36 home runs and 119 RBIs.[19] He won the Joe Bauman Home Run Award.[20] That season, Alonso was the final batter in Cashman Field history, as he hit a walk-off home run in the bottom of the 9th inning during the last baseball game played at the facility.[21]

New York MetsEdit

Alonso made the Mets Opening Day roster in 2019 as the starting first baseman.[22] Alonso was in the team's starting lineup on Opening Day on March 28, and recorded his first major league hit against Washington Nationals pitcher Justin Miller in the eighth inning.[23] He hit his first major league home run on April 1 off of Drew Steckenrider of the Miami Marlins.[24] On April 9, Alonso had his first career multi-home run game against the Minnesota Twins.[25]

Alonso became the first player in MLB history since 1900 with 11 extra-base hits in his first 10 career games. No other player ever had more than nine.[26] In April, Alonso batted .292 with nine home runs, eight doubles, one triple and 26 RBIs in his first games in the big leagues. He won the National League Rookie of the Month Award for April.[27] Alonso's nine home runs lead all MLB rookies and are tied for the most by a Mets player before May 1 with Neil Walker (2016), John Buck (2013), Carlos Delgado (2006) and Dave Kingman (1976).[28]

On June 22, Alonso hit his 26th home run, breaking the National League record for most home runs by a rookie before the All-Star break, passing Cody Bellinger. The next day, with his 27th home run, he broke the Mets rookie home run record, previously set by Darryl Strawberry in 1983.[29][30] Alonso was selected as a reserve to the 2019 All-Star Game.[31] He also won the National League Rookie of the Month Award for the month of June.[32]

On July 7, Alonso became the second player in Mets history to hit the most home runs (30) before the All-Star break, after Dave Kingman (1976).[33] On July 8, Alonso won the 2019 MLB Home Run Derby, defeating Toronto Blue Jays third baseman Vladimir Guerrero Jr. 23–22 in the final round, becoming only the second rookie, after Aaron Judge, to win the Derby outright. On the way to the final round, Alonso also beat Carlos Santana and Ronald Acuña Jr., hitting 57 total home runs during the entire Derby.[34]

On August 15, Alonso, in a 10–8 win over the Atlanta Braves, hit his 39th home run, tying Bellinger for the most home runs by a rookie in National League history. Alonso finished the game with a career-high five hits and six RBIs.[35] He broke Bellinger's record on August 18 with his 40th home run in an 11–5 win against the Kansas City Royals.[36] On August 27, Alonso hit his 42nd home run to become the Mets all-time single-season home run leader, surpassing Carlos Beltrán and Todd Hundley. He is the first rookie to set his franchise's single-season home run record since Johnny Rizzo did it for the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1938.[37]

On September 20, Alonso became the second rookie (after Aaron Judge), and the first Mets player, to hit 50 home runs in a season.[38] He hit his 51st home run on September 25, becoming the fifth player in MLB history to have at least 51 home runs and 118 RBIs at the age of 24 or younger in a season. He joined 24-year-olds Mickey Mantle (52/130 in 1956), Willie Mays (52/127 in 1955), Ralph Kiner (51/127 in 1947), and Jimmie Foxx (58/169 in 1932).

On September 27, Alonso hit his 52nd home run of the season, tying Aaron Judge for the most home runs by a rookie in MLB history.[39] He hit his 53rd the next day to break Judge's record.[40] Alonso's 415-foot solo shot was hit off of Atlanta Braves starter Mike Foltynewicz.[41]

In 2019, he led the major leagues in home runs, with 53. On defense, he had a -6 Defensive Runs Saved (DRS) rating, the lowest in the major leagues among first basemen.[42]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Pete Alonso gets polar bear tribute in Mets dugout". MLB.com. Retrieved July 4, 2019.
  2. ^ Mohr, Dani (June 24, 2019). "Mets' Pete Alonso wins NL Player of the Week honors". Nypost.com. Retrieved July 4, 2019.
  3. ^ About Gianna Arantes (June 19, 2019). "Pete Alonso Has First Career Four-Hit Game". Metsmerized Online. Retrieved July 4, 2019.
  4. ^ Healey, Tim (March 31, 2019). "Pete Alonso's Queens connection". Newsday. Retrieved March 31, 2019.
  5. ^ "Florida high school sports – Baseball: Plant 3B/1B Pete Alonso commits to Florida". Tampa Bay Times. Archived from the original on February 7, 2017. Retrieved November 29, 2016.
  6. ^ a b Correspondent, Alex Maminakis. "Peter Alonso happy with UF choice". The Gainesville Sun. Retrieved November 29, 2016.
  7. ^ "Pete Alonso Needs More Than Power to Claim His Spot With the Mets – The New York Times". Nytimes.com. Retrieved July 4, 2019.
  8. ^ a b c "Farm Report: Peter Alonso thriving after bad break". ESPN.com. Retrieved November 29, 2016.
  9. ^ Former Gator Pete Alonso Shining for the New York Mets. "Former Gator Pete Alonso Shining for the New York Mets – ESPN 98.1 FM – 850 AM WRUF". Wruf.com. Retrieved July 4, 2019.
  10. ^ "Peter Alonso leads Gators into College World Series (w/ video)". Tampa Bay Times. Retrieved November 29, 2016.
  11. ^ "Mets 2nd-round pick Peter Alonso is a slugger with big dreams". NJ.com. Retrieved November 29, 2016.
  12. ^ "Mets sign 2016 second-round pick Peter Alonso". SNY.TV. Retrieved November 29, 2016.
  13. ^ "New York Mets' No. 13 prospect Peter Alonso flashing All-Star form with Brooklyn Cyclones – MiLB.com News – The Official Site of Minor League Baseball". MiLB.com. Retrieved November 29, 2016.
  14. ^ "Ponies' Alonso rips first two Double-A homers". MiLB.com. Retrieved January 30, 2019.
  15. ^ "Peter Alonso Stats, Highlights, Bio – MiLB.com Stats – The Official Site of Minor League Baseball". MiLB.com. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
  16. ^ "Gimenez leads new Mets Top 30 Prospects list". MLB.com. Retrieved February 22, 2018.
  17. ^ "Mets' Alonso reaches four-gone conclusion". MiLB.com. Retrieved July 5, 2018.
  18. ^ "Mets prospect Peter Alonso to play in Futures Game". SNY. Retrieved July 5, 2018.
  19. ^ "Peter Alonso Stats, Highlights, Bio – MiLB.com Stats – The Official Site of Minor League Baseball". MiLB.com. Retrieved October 21, 2018.
  20. ^ "Mets' Alonso recalls award-worthy 2018". MiLB.com. Retrieved January 30, 2019.
  21. ^ "Alonso ties for home run lead with walk-off". MiLB.com. September 3, 2018.
  22. ^ "Pete Alonso gets Mets roster spot after amazing spring training". New York Post. March 27, 2019. Retrieved March 29, 2019.
  23. ^ Vasquez, Andy (March 28, 2019). "Mets' Pete Alonso 'walking on clouds' after major league debut and first hit". North Jersey Media Group. Retrieved March 28, 2019.
  24. ^ Healey, Tim. "Alonso's first HR boosts Mets in win over Marlins". Newsday. Retrieved May 3, 2019.
  25. ^ De Nicola, Christina (April 2, 2019). "Alonso's first career HR an EPIC blast". MLB.com. Retrieved April 11, 2019.
  26. ^ Abriano, Danny. "Mets rookie Pete Alonso made MLB history on Tuesday". SNY. Retrieved May 3, 2019.
  27. ^ Thosar, Deesha. "Pete Alonso becomes fourth Met to win Rookie of the Month honors". nydailynews.com. Retrieved May 3, 2019.
  28. ^ Thornburg, Chad (May 2, 2019). "Brandon Lowe Pete Alonso Rookies of the Month". MLB.com. Retrieved June 1, 2019.
  29. ^ Thosar, Deesha. "Pete Alonso ties Darryl Strawberry for Mets rookie HR record in dominating win over Cubs". nydailynews.com.
  30. ^ Russell Dorsey (June 22, 2019). "Pete Alonso home run makes NL rookie history". Mlb.com. Retrieved July 4, 2019.
  31. ^ "Pete Alonso among three Mets named to All-Star Game". SNY.
  32. ^ Harrigan, Thomas (July 3, 2019). "Alvarez, Alonso are top rookies for June". MLB.com. Major League Baseball. Retrieved August 25, 2019.
  33. ^ "WATCH: Pete Alonso ties another Mets record with 30th home run". SNY.
  34. ^ Feinsand, Mark (July 8, 2019). "Polar Bear Pete! Alonso wins Home Run Derby". MLB.com. Retrieved July 8, 2019.
  35. ^ Anthony DiComo (May 24, 2018). "Pete Alonso ties National League rookie HR record". MLB.com. Retrieved August 19, 2019.
  36. ^ Falkoff, Robert (May 24, 2018). "Pete Alonso sets NL rookie home run record with 40". MLB.com. Retrieved August 19, 2019.
  37. ^ "Alonso becomes Mets' homer king with No. 42". MLB.com. Retrieved August 28, 2019.
  38. ^ Wallner, Jeff (September 21, 2019). "Pete Alonso hits 50th home run". MLB.com. Retrieved October 7, 2019.
  39. ^ https://www.espn.com/mlb/story/_/id/27715510/mets-pete-alonso-ties-aaron-judge-rookie-record-52nd-homer
  40. ^ "Alonso sets rookie HR record with No. 53". MLB.com. September 28, 2019. Retrieved September 28, 2019.
  41. ^ https://www.espn.com/mlb/story/_/id/27723181/mets-pete-alonso-breaks-aaron-judge-rookie-hr-record
  42. ^ "Major League Leaderboards » 2019 » First Basemen » Fielding Statistics | FanGraphs Baseball". Fangraphs.com. January 1, 2019. Retrieved October 7, 2019.

External linksEdit