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New York Yankees superstar slugger Aaron Judge hits record - breaking 62nd Home Run of the Season
On Tuesday, October 4th, 2022 the American League of Major League Baseball crowned a new single - season home run champion as the New York Yankees superstar outfielder / designated hitter, Aaron Judge, crushed his 62nd home run of the 2022 MLB season during a road game against the Texas Rangers.
The Previous Record Holder
This long - time standing mark of the American League single - season home run king was last reached by Roger Maris also of the New York Yankees. Judge managed to break that amazing AL home run record during the second to last MLB regular season game for the New York Yankees this year.
Tying the Record
On Wednesday, September 28th, 2022 Judge slugged a Tim Mayza sinker - ball over the fence and into the Toronto Blue Jays bullpen in order to tie Maris' AL single - season home run record, Judge had gone without hitting a long ball ever since the New York Yankees' last MLB regular - season homestand of the 2022 MLB season. That was during a 3 - game series versus the Baltimore Orioles.
The 62nd Home Run for Judge this Season
Now that Aaron was back on the road, he had gone just 2 - for - 9 with only 2 - singles over the course of his 2 - games versus the Texas Rangers through the first game of last Tuesday's doubleheader, when he took the Texas Rangers starting pitcher, Jesus Tinoco, deep and over the wall during the first at bat of the second game of that doubleheader in order to reach that historical milestone of hitting 62 home runs during a single Major League Baseball season.
"It's a big relief. I think that everyone can sit back down in their seats and watch the ballgame, you know? No, but it's been a fun ride so far," the New York Yankees star outfielder Aaron Judge stated. "Getting a chance to do this, with the team we've got, the guys surrounding me, the constant support from my family whose been with me through this whole thing ... it's been a great honor."
The New York Yankees all got together and gathered around home plate at the Texas Rangers ball park in order to greet Judge following his 62nd home run of the year, and Judge removed his batting helmet as he confidently walked back to the New York Yankees dugout so that he could properly acknowledge the fans that were all on their feet during last Tuesday night’s ball game. When Aaron took the field for the bottom of the 1st - inning, he was once again provided a well - deserved standing ovation for his major MLB accomplishment that was very elusive for so many of the American League’s best home run hitters over the past century.
"Pretty surreal," Judge mentioned. "Just like in Toronto, it was pretty awesome, having their support. I think, in Texas, they were a little more excited. They could finally exhale. At home, in the dugout, I can see right in and see all the guys sitting at the top steps. Here on the road, they are behind me, so I didn't see the 40 - plus people sitting in the dugout. So, I think, to finally see them run out on the field and get a chance to hug them all, that's what it's about for me."
The now highly valued souvenir baseball …
… that was caught by Cory Youmans of Dallas, Texas, was sitting in the lucky Section 31, where the 62nd home run ball for Judge just so happened to land. When Youmans was questioned about what he was going to do with the now legendary baseball as he was taken away by security guards to have the ball authenticated, Cory responded by saying, "Good question. I haven't thought about it."
At the time of his postgame news conference with the major sports media outlets, Judge had yet to meet Youmans, but he did say that it was the fan's right to decide what to do with the ball if he was so inclined to keep the ball.
"I don't know where it is," Judge goes on to say. "It would be nice to get it, but that guy made a great catch."
Judge struck out in the second inning and was removed from the game when the Yankees next took the field, again drawing a standing ovation. The Rangers went on to win 3-2. The Yankees won the first game of the doubleheader 5-4.
"We were all a little bit out of sorts," the New York Yankees big - name starting pitcher Gerrit Cole explained. "What a special opportunity to share a field with this guy. He's just an unbelievable player, unbelievable talent, unbelievable human. He's been our rock all year."
The Anniversary of Maris passing the Babe
The record - setting home run came only 3 - days following the 61st anniversary of the day that Roger Maris surpassed the historic and legendary Babe Ruth’s American League single – season home run record of 60 dingers with Maris’ 61st homer.
"Roger Maris Jr,. him and his family, supporting and being along for the ride too, a lot of thanks and congratulations to them too," Judge expressed. "It's a tough situation, your dad's legacy and you want to uphold that. But getting a chance to meet that family, they are wonderful people. Getting a chance to have my name next to someone as great as Roger Maris, Babe Ruth, those guys, is incredible."
The MLB National League Single - Season Home Run Record Holders
Only Barry Bonds with 73 - home runs, Mark McGwire with 70 and 65 - home runs, and Sammy Sosa with 66, 64, and 63 - home runs are ahead of Aaron Judge on the Major League Baseball's all - time single - season home run record list. All three of those legendary retired MLB players were in the National League when they produced those high - level single season home run marks.
While Judge holds the American League record, Maris Jr. stated earlier this week that he believes Judge should be recognized and considered as the true, "home run king," as all of the other 3 - big - league players were heavily abusing anabolic steroids or other performance enhancing drugs (PEDs) at the time when they made their marks in the MLB history books.
Maris' record stood - tall as the all - time MLB single - season home run record until McGwire surpassed it by smashing 70 homers in 1998. Bonds surpassed McGwire back in 2001, with baseball's official single - season record of 73 - home runs, but Maris Jr. diminished the overall achievements of those 2 - sluggers, who accomplished their big - time home run feats during the heavily - criticized steroid era of Major League Baseball.
"He plays the game the right way," Roger Maris Jr. proclaimed of Judge earlier during this very memorable week. "And I think it gives people the chance to look at somebody who should be revered for hitting 62 - home runs, and not just a guy who hit it in the American League, but for being the actual single - season home run champion. That's who he is. It's 62, and I think that's what needs to happen."
Judge, who ultimately grew up approximately only 1 - half - hour east of the city of San Francisco, California, as a big San Francisco Giants fan, has publicly stated that he still believes that: Barry Bonds' 73 - home runs is the rightful all - time MLB single - season record.
The New York Yankees head coach / manager, Aaron Boone, disclosed that he feels extremely privileged to have had a front - row seat to this very special moment in professional big - league baseball history.
"The history of this game is one of its calling cards," the New York Yankees manager, Aaron Boone, confirmed. "The number 61. I've known about that number for my entire life. I think one thing that makes our sport a little more special than the others is the history of it all. We do history really well. And this has been a year and a season where we're in the middle of one of those magical historical moments, and that's tied to a number. And that's pretty neat."
What’s next for the New York Yankees this year?
The New York Yankees will being the 2022 Major League Baseball postseason as the number - 2 seed in the American League.
"That's one of the things we said when we got together, like this is just the start of hopefully what is more magical moments to come, as a team," Boone went on to say during an interview this week. "We're hoping to ride that."
Aaron Judge’s Baseball Career Achievements, Honors, & Awards
- 4 - Time MLB All - Star Selection (2017, 2018, 2021, 2022)
- All - MLB First Team Selection (2021)
- American League Rookie of the Year Award Winner (2017)
- 2 - Time Silver Slugger Award Winner (2017, 2021)
- Wilson Defensive Player of the Year Award Winner (2019)
- 2 - Time American League Home Run Leader (2017, 2022)
- MLB RBI Leader (2022)
Roger Maris’ Baseball Career Achievements, Honors, & Awards
- 7 - Time MLB All - Star Selection (1959², 1960², 1961², 1962²)
- 3 - Time MLB World Series Champion (1961, 1962, 1967)
- 2 - Time American League MVP Award Winner (1960, 1961)
- Gold Glove Award Winner (1960)
- American League Home Run Leader (1961)
- 2 - Time American League RBI Leader (1960, 1961)
- New York Yankees Jersey Number 9 Retired
- Monument Park Honoree
“New York Yankees star Aaron Judge launches 62nd home run, sets AL single - season record”, Marly Rivera, espn.com, Tuesday, October 4, 2022.
“Aaron Judge”, baseball-reference.com, Thursday, October 6, 2022.
“Roger Maris”, baseball-reference.com, Thursday, October 6, 2022.
Written by: David Green