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. Now, for Game 134:
Aaron Judge through Game 134 of 2022: 53 HR
Team Game 134: 9/4 — 3-for-5, 1 HR, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 2 R
Aaron Judge was given a rare day leading off the lineup, and he wasted no time treating the fans inside Tropicana Field to a show. On the second pitch of the game Judge hammered a solo shot out to left field, reaching the third deck in a prime display of his incredible power. The blast officially put him past his previous career-high for homers with 53, surpassing his mark from his Rookie of the Year 2017 season.
That’s eight and counting for Judge to match Roger Maris, and at this point he’s smack in the middle of several of the players in this series. Could we dare dream of a season where Judge not only passes Maris but threatens Sosa or McGwire’s marks? We can only sit and wait to see.
Roger Maris through Game 134 of 1961: 51 HR
Team Game 134: 9/1 — 0-for-4, 1 K
Maris’ first game in September saw him stay on 51 for his season total, going 0-for against the Tigers in another frustrating game. The Yankees could’ve used either of the M&M Brothers producing something in this one to add some insurance, but they were able to hold onto a 1-0 lead regardless to fend off the Tigers.
Babe Ruth through Game 134 of 1927: 49 HR
Team Game 134: 9/7 — 4-for-5, 2 HR, 1 2B, 5 RBI, 3 R, 1 K
Ruth’s charge to 60 through September had two critical runs, and this is the end of the first one — he hit his fourth and fifth homers in three days in this game. Ruth began with a solo shot in the first inning to get the Yankees on the board, and then in the eighth inning he stepped up and provided a two-run blast that would provide the decisive runs. Without his efforts, New York would’ve dropped a winnable game to a terrible Red Sox team after allowing eight runs in the fourth inning — instead, the Bambino tortured his old team and the Yanks handled business against a bad team (funny, that).
Barry Bonds through Game 134 of 2001: 56 HR
Team Game 134: 8/30 — 1-for-2, 3 BB
The Diamondbacks wanted no part of Bonds on this night, walking him three times. Though he didn’t score on any of those opportunities, the rest of the Giants lineup mashed to the tune of 13 runs. The Giants opted to lift Bonds for a pinch-runner in the eighth after it became clear that he wouldn’t get another opportunity to mash a homer.
Mark McGwire through Game 134 of 1998: 54 HR
Team Game 134: 8/27 — 0-for-4, 1 K
Not much to report on here from McGwire, who had a quiet night as his Cardinals’ late rally against Atlanta fell short. This was the final game of a six-game losing streak for St. Louis, firmly establishing themselves outside of the postseason hunt despite the prolific season McGwire was having.
Sammy Sosa through Game 134 of 1998: 52 HR
Team Game 134: 8/27 — 2-for-5, 1 RBI, 1 R, 1 BB, 1 K
Sosa wouldn’t homer on this day, but he did contribute to a narrow victory over Colorado. Sosa singled off of Pedro Astacio in the fifth inning, driving home a run and moving to third a batter later. The Cubs went on to win by a single run in extras, so they needed every ounce of offense they got in this one.