New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge broke Roger Maris’ single-season American League home run record, hitting his 62nd blast of the year in a game Tuesday against the Texas Rangers.
Judge connected for the record home run off Rangers starting pitcher Jesus Tinoco in the first inning of the second game of a double header in Arlington, Texas.
The Yankees’ leadoff hitter launched the third pitch of his first at-bat against Tinoco into the seats in left field. A fan was seen either jumping or falling over the left-field wall nearby, disappearing behind the fence.
A fan who caught the historic ball was escorted from the section of seats by security, according to reporters at the game.
Yankees players streamed out of the dugout to enthusiastically greet their teammate when he touched home plate.
Judge, 30, had tied Maris last Wednesday with a line-drive homer in the top of the seventh inning off Toronto Blue Jays’ pitcher Tim Mayza.
Judge struck out in the second inning Tuesday and in the bottom of half of the inning, Yankees manager Aaron Boone took him out of the game to raucous cheers from the crowd at Globe Life Field.
Maris hit 61 home runs 61 years ago in 1961, breaking Babe Ruth’s record of 60 set in 1927. Barry Bonds set the major league record with 73 home runs in 2001.
The other two players to hit more home runs than Judge in a season are Mark McGwire (who did so twice) and Sammy Sosa (three times).
It is unclear whether Judge will play Wednesday in the final game of the regular season, but he has an outside chance of winning the American League triple crown (leading the circuit in batting average, runs batted in and home runs).
Judge is first in home runs and RBIs, but trails Minnesota Twins star Luis Arráez in batting average.
Home run records are not new to Judge. He also holds the American League record for rookies with 52 in 2017. While that was the major league mark at the time, Pete Alonso of the New York Mets hit 53 as a rookie in 2019.