New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge belted his 62nd home run of the season on Tuesday evening, setting a new, all-time record for the American League.
Judge’s milestone dinger came in an away game against the Texas Rangers, in the first inning opposite right-hander Jesus Tinoco. With the homer, the outfielder eclipsed the 61 mark set by Yankee great Roger Maris in October 1961.
The game is being carried by YES Network (for us in the NY Metro area), Bally Sports (in the southwest) and MLB Network; Michael Kay was tasked with chronicling the record-breaker. Watch the historic moment below:
Judge had tied Maris’ record on Sept. 28, after going seven games and 34 plate appearances without a round-tripper. That tie-breaking, two-run homer came in the seventh inning off Toronto Blue Jays left-hander Tim Mayza, leading the Yankees to an 8-3 victory.
Barry Bonds, of course, holds the Major League Baseball record for most home runs in a single season, having swatted 73 in 2001 for the San Francisco Giants. He is followed by Mark McGwire (who hit 70 in 1998, and 65 a year later, both times as a St. Louis Cardinal). Sammy Sosa, meanwhile, belted 66 (in 1998), 64 (2001) and 63 (1999), all for the Chicago Cubs.
The late Roger Maris’ son, Roger Maris Jr., last week opined that if Judge went on to best his dad’s record, “He should be revered for being the actual single-season home run champ,” given the “Steroid Era” asterisk that looms over the prodigious slugging done by Bonds, McGwire and Sosa. “I mean, that’s really who he is if he hits 62, and I think that’s what needs to happen.”
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