New York Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge is having the best season of his career. Not only he is hitting for average and getting on base at a high clip, with a rock-solid .302/.403/.682 slash line, but he is having one of the most amazing power seasons in recent memory.
As of Wednesday morning, the Yankees’ star has 54 home runs, and with a little less than a month remaining on the regular season calendar, he has a shot at several power-related records in the franchise and MLB.
For starters, he is just seven home runs away from tying Roger Maris for the Yankees’ single-season home run record. The left-hander established that mark during his magical 1961 season, and that’s also the record for the American League.
Getting to 62 should be Judge’s most realistic goal. He needs eight more: it won’t be easy by any means, but since he is currently on pace to hit 65, it seems doable.
Babe Ruth hit 60 home runs in 1927, Maris had 60 in 1961, and then the steroids era came: Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa both surpassed Maris’ mark in several occasions, with 70 and 66 being their highest outputs, in 1998.
The Yankees’ outfielder sees Bonds as the record-holder
Then Barry Bonds came in 2001, and hit 73 bombs. Some people say that since that mark was achieved during the steroids era, it shouldn’t count, and the same goes for McGwire and Sosa. As a result, they see Maris’ 61 as the record.
What does the Yankees’ star think about that?
Judge, who was born in the Bay Area, acknowledged Bonds as the record-holder, per NJ Advance Media.
“Oh, yeah,” Judge said. “That’s the record. I watched him do it. I stayed up late watching him do it. That’s the record. No one can take that from him.”
Judge can realistically surpass Maris’ franchise record, but he would need to get really, really hot to have a shot at Bonds’.
Per ESPN, the Yankees’ slugger is projected to hit 65 homers, drive in 140, and score 131 runs.