By Evan Bleier / May 22, 2018

Nationals Rookie Homers on First Pitch of First MLB Start

Juan Soto got his big league career started with a three-run bang.

Juan Soto #22 of the Washington Nationals bats in the eighth inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers during his MLB debut at Nationals Park on May 20, 2018 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
Juan Soto #22 of the Washington Nationals bats in the eighth inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers during his MLB debut at Nationals Park on May 20, 2018 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)

A lot of people don’t like Mondays, but Washington Nationals rookie Juan Soto isn’t one of them.

After being called up from Double-A on Sunday and going 0-1 as a pinch hitter, 19-year-old Soto stepped to the plate on Monday in the second inning of his first start with two men on base.

On the first pitch he saw, the youngest player in the majors took San Diego Padres pitcher Robbie Erlin 422 feet over the left-center fence in Washington for a three-run homer.

With the shot, Soto – who hit .362 with 14 homers and 52 RBIs in 39 games in the minors – became the first teenager to homer in the big league since his teammate Bryce Harper did it on September 30, 2012.

“I didn’t think it was going to go out of the park,” Soto said. “I just run hard, the same I do in the minor leagues. Then I heard the noise, and I know it was gone.”

Not a bad way to start a week – or a career.

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