Former St. Louis Cardinals and Peoria Chiefs player hits a 527-foot home run

PEORIA — Leandro Cedeno hit home runs when he played two seasons for the Peoria Chiefs, but nothing like the one he hit in a Double-A game on Saturday.

Few players have ever done it.

Cedeno homered 527 feet on Christmas night in July for the Amarillo Sod Poodles in a game against San Antonio, hitting a 3-0 pitch from San Diego Padres prospect Nolan Watson, a pick first round by Kansas City in 2015.

The ball left the whole stadium just to the left of the center field, cleared a large car park and landed near a tree against a building.

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“It’s amazing. I don’t think I can ever hit a ball that far,” Cedeno told MLB.com. “I was sure (it was a) home run. I stepped in like ‘OK, I’ve got that one’ and enjoyed the moment.”

It’s the longest home run recorded in baseball since MLB started using Statcast to measure performance in 2015. In 2019, Nomar Mazara hit a 505-foot home run for the Rangers.

Cedeno’s exploit was covered by Sports Illustrated, Yahoo Sports, USA Today and MLB.com. His home run came out with a speed of 113 mph and would be the longest in the minors or majors since Adam Dunn hit a 535-footer for Cincinnati in 2004.

The longest home run in minor league history is attributed to then-Brewers prospect Joey Meyer, who hammered 582 feet in 1987.

Leandro Cedeno hits an RBI brace in the fourth inning of Peoria's game against West Michigan at Dozer Park on Wednesday, June 30, 2021.

Cedeno, who turns 24 in August, is a native of Guatire, Venezuela, who spent seven seasons in the St. Louis Cardinals system and was part of a large contingent of Venezuela Chiefs players in 2019.

He signed with the Diamondbacks as a free agent this season and is tearing up the Double-A Texas League, with 18 homers, 61 RBIs and a .303 batting average in 73 games.

He primarily played in the field for the then-Class A Chiefs in 2019, hitting .271 with six home runs and 44 RBIs in 100 games.

COVID-19 wiped out the 2020 minor league season, but Cedeno returned to Peoria in 2021 and played for the Class A Chiefs, for whom he hit nine homers, with 44 RBI and an average of .261 in 77 games .

Leandro Cedeno crosses home plate after homering in the bottom of the seventh inning in Peoria's 10-4 loss to Wisconsin at Dozer Park on Wednesday, July 14, 2021.

In total, he hit 15 home runs in 177 games with the Chiefs. His power numbers with Double-A Amarillo are unprecedented in his career. His 527-foot shot was hit at Hodgetown Stadium, a $46 million ballpark that opened in 2019 in Amarillo, Texas, where the elevation is 3,605 feet.

Dave Eminian is the Journal Star’s sports columnist and covers men’s basketball for Bradley, the Rivermen and the Chiefs. He writes the sports column Cleve In The Eve for pjstar.com. Contact him at 686-3206 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @icetimecleve.

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