Home-run Boom in June

Mickey Mantle challenging John Glenn et al, May 1963: They don’t make ’em like this anymore…or do they?

What gives? Has it something to do with $$$? Yuh think?

Elias Sports Bureau registers 1,101 home runs slugged in the two major leagues during June 2017. That tops the one-month record (May 2000) by thirty-two.

We at Right off the Bat HQ, as in the book, have a dubious take on this as we write regarding Home Run Derby, which precedes the All-star Game.

Is pitching further watered down? Steroids’ taking making a 21st-c. comeback? Word is, the balls have more spring. The so-called rabbit ball dates back at least to the early 1920s. The winding of the horsehide has been known to vary as a correlative of attendance.

October 4 will be the 60th (this once a magic single-season number, courtesy Babe Ruth in 1927, followed by Roger Maris’s assault on Ruth’s then-record in 1961) anniversary of Sputnik 1. Players today are competing with launches in their own way.

Aaron Judge, for example, a king-sized strikeout machine with the New York Yankees in 2016, is challenging Mark McGwire’s rookie record (49): that is, if Aaron is technically judged a rookie. He’s already hit one ~500 feet. The rate his ball travels, right off the bat, to the distant outfield and further, is measured as the fastest ever…I’m not sure how this metric, exit velocity, validates on an all-time basis.

(Speaking of all-time, does home-run frequency cheapen its unique impact? On September 19, 2017, ca. 9:15 EDT, Alex Gordon of the Kansas City Royals hit major-leagues home-run number 5,694. It breaks the all-time record set in 2000.)

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About rightoffthebatbook

Co-author of the book, "Right Off the Bat: Baseball, Cricket, Literature, and Life"
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