Welcome back to the Aaron Judge Home Run Record Tracker! We’re taking a daily look at where Aaron Judge’s monster season tracks compared to some of the other historic single-season home run leaders in anticipation of Judge potentially joining their ranks. We’ll be going by Team Game because not every player’s seasons were in sync with the calendar days and everyone didn’t play all of the team’s games, which makes this our universal standard. Let’s head onto Game 128:
Aaron Judge through Game 128 of 2022: 49 HR
Team Game 128: 8/27 — 0-for-4, 3 K
Two days in Oakland, two entirely listless offensive performances from the Yankees, and a couple of quiet games from Aaron Judge. He wasn’t able to add to his total this weekend, still stuck on 49 after his big three-run jack on Friday night. Judge still remains in a similar spot through 128 games as players like Maris and Sosa, but he may need to put the team on his back soon if the Yankees are to break out of their weird offensive malaise.
Roger Maris through Game 128 of 1961: 50 HR
Team Game 128: 8/25 — 0-for-3, 1 K
Back-to-back blanks for Maris, who was on the precipice of his September push. The Yankees wouldn’t need much from him on this day, with Ralph Terry pitching a five-hit shutout in a 3-0 win.
Babe Ruth through Game 128 of 1927: 44 HR
Team Game 128: 9/2 — 1-for-3, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 1 BB, 1 R, 2 SF
As the straggler in our look at these collective home run chases, the Babe has some work to do, and he got one today with a solo homer in the first inning off of Rube Walberg. The Yankees would go on to crush the Philadelphia Athletics, with Lou Gehrig hitting two dingers of his own, giving him 43 on the year and keeping pace with Ruth.
Barry Bonds through Game 128 of 2001: 55 HR
Team Game 128: 8/24 — 1-for-3, 1 BB, 1 K
A quiet game for Bonds, who had a day off prior and managed a single and a walk in four plate appearance in this one. A useful part of this exercise is to see that even in the greatest baseball seasons in history, the players who author them still quite often have mundane, 1-for-3 games with a single.
Mark McGwire through Game 128 of 1998: 51 HR
Team Game 128: 8/21 (2) — 0-for-4, 3 K, 1 BB
You just don’t see doubleheaders on back-to-back days anymore. McGwire must’ve been sick of playing at Shea Stadium, as he had a tough game in the Cardinals fourth game in two days against the Mets. Both teams seemed to be done with it all, with the Mets scoring a run in the first inning, followed by eight shutout innings, with the Mets winning 1-0 in front of a sellout Friday night crowd.
Sammy Sosa through Game 128 of 1998: 49 HR
Team Game 128: 8/21 — 3-for-5, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 2 R, 1 K
Last but not least, Sosa was the only one of our group today to go deep, launching a mammoth shot off of Orel Hershiser:
The bomb gave Sosa 49 on the year, and was also crucial for the Cubs that day, giving them a 4-3 lead in a game that they won 6-5.