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This Day in Yankees History: Derek Jeter passes Babe Ruth

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A dozen years ago, the Captain passed the Babe on the Yankees’ hit list.

New York Yankee Derek Jeter tips his helmet to adoring crowd Photo by Robert Sabo/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images

Welcome to This Day in Yankees History. The season may be underway, but that doesn’t mean we can’t take a trip into the past. These daily posts will highlight two or three key moments in Yankees history on a given date, as well as recognize players born on the day. Hope you enjoy this trip down memory lane with us!

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84 Years Ago

The Yankees sew up their eighth pennant with a doubleheader sweep of Cleveland. Lou Gehrig hits two home runs on the day as the Yankees score a combined 23 runs. They finish 19.5 games ahead of Tigers, their largest clinching margin yet.

59 Years Ago

Roger Maris hits his 56th home run as he pursues the single-season home run record, and the Yankees come back for an 8-7 win over Cleveland. Mickey Mantle sits on 52 home runs for the season, meaning the pair now holds the record for most homers by a teammate duo, surpassing Gehrig and Babe Ruth, who hit 47 and 60, respectively, in 1927.

22 Years Ago

The Yankees clinch not a pennant, but the AL East title, the earliest they’ve ever done so. They move 20.5 games ahead of the Red Sox with a 7-5 win over Boston. Derek Jeter and Paul O’Neill hit two home runs. The Yankees sit at 102-41, and will finish the season at 114-48.

12 Years Ago

Derek Jeter strokes a first-inning single for his 2519th career hit, passing Babe Ruth for second on the Yankees’ all-time list. Only Lou Gehrig remains ahead of Jeter, and Jeter would overtake him for the crown by the end of the next season.

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Today would have been the birthday of a pair of Hall-of-Famers: Waite Hoyt, and Frank Chance. Hoyt won 237 games over the course of a 21-year career, 10 years of which were spent with the Yankees in across the 1920’s. Chance only played 13 games with the Yankees, which came after a stellar 15-year stint with the Cubs where he managed an overall 136 OPS+.

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We thank Baseball-Reference and Nationalpastime.com for providing background information for these posts.