Pete Alonso may only have 64 games in the majors under his belt, but he has already established himself as one of the most feared power hitters in the league
The Mets rookie slugger is crushing major-league pitching, hitting 21 home runs -- second-best in the majors only to Christian Yelich -- with a slash line of .258/.337/.597 entering June 11.
"I've seen some batting practice pop," teammate Todd Frazier told Leo Sepkowitz of Bleacher Report. "And he's probably top five I'ver ever seen -- just balls being crushed, easy."
Yet it is not just his teammates who are in awe, Alonso himself is still getting used to the fact that he is actually doing this -- he is in the majors, and he is raking.
"It's strange," Alonso said in Sepkowitz's feature. "Seeing [myself] on replay is like -- I'm almost in disbelief. It looks like me, but it just feels like I'm out-of-body. I can't believe that's me."
Alonso's first "welcome to the big leagues" moment came quickly. In the second game of the season, the 24-year-old was stepping into the plate against Stephen Strasburg. Alonso went 3-for-4 with two hits off Strasburg, including his first career double.
"Looking back and watching me swing was like, 'Wow, I just ripped the hell out of Strasburg's slider. Whoa,'" he said.
Alonso's homered off Madison Bumgarner, ripped RBIs off Clayton Kershaw and tied a rookie record with Mark McGwire for most home runs before June 1 (19). His mammoth home runs with incredible exit velocities have given the Mets their Statcast darling to counter the sluggers of the Yankees across town.
Yet Alonso does not pay any attention to that.
"Most of the things in hitting you can't quantify," he said. "It's a feel thing. I'm not trying to hit a 25-degree [launch angle] at 105 [mph], because if I think about that, the ball's already by me and I'm out. That doesn't make sense. It's all about rhythm. Slow and easy."
Alonso may dismiss the Statcast numbers, but he does have his own sort of analytical approach to the game. Since he was in college at Florida, Alonso has returned to his locker after every single game and fills a notebook with details of every at-bat.
"One I write stuff down, it usually sticks up in the memory bank a little better," he said. "Some people razz me and call it my diary. It's official. It's a notebook, not a diary."
Teammates are afraid to go near the notebook or ask what exactly is in it.
Zack Wheeler said it was "top secret stuff" while Smith simply says "he has information."
Whatever is in there, it seems to be working as he chases Aaron Judge's rookie home run record of 52 and has is blossoming as a star in New York. Of course, that is not how Alonso views himself.
"I still can't believe I'm a big leaguer," he said. "I just feel like a normal dude who's playing baseball."