Who was Roger Maris, Yankees home run record holder?
Aaron Judge is close to becoming the Yankees and American League all-time leader for most home runs in a season, but who holds the current record?
Roger Maris was an American baseball player who was born on September 10, 1934 in Hibbing, Minnesota, and since 1961 he has held the home run record of the New York Yankees and the American League.
Before arriving in the Big Ten, Maris spent four years in the Minors with the Fargo-Moorhead Twins (1953), Keokuk Kernels (1954), Tulsa Oilers (1955), Reading Indians (1955) and Indianapolis Indians (1956). His power at bat was notorious when he played in the Minor Leagues, since he hit 78 home runs during his stay there.
Already in the Majors, the Cleveland Indians traded him to the Kansas City Athletics after a year and a half with the team. With the A's he got his first invitation to the MLB All-Star after driving in 72 runs in 1959.
Finally, in 1960 Maris arrived in New York together with Kent Hadley and Joe DeMaestri in exchange for Marv Throneberry, Norm Siebern, Hank Bauer and Don Larsen. His impact was such that he won the Gold Glove for right fielder and his first MVP award with an average of .371 after hitting 141 hits, recording 112 runs and connecting 39 HRs.
Maris’ Record season
In the 1961 MLB campaign, Maris hit 61 home runs and set the still-standing mark for most HRs in a season for a Yankees and AL player. The previous record was set by Babe Ruth, who hit 60 in 1927.
The American League established a 162-game regular season schedule beginning in 1961 in which each team faced the league's nine rivals 18 times. Due to this, Maris's record generated controversy since the 'Great Bambino' achieved it in a campaign of 154 games.
The outfielder won two World Series with the Manhattan Mulos after beating the Cincinnati Reds in 1961 and the San Francisco Giants in 1962. The twilight of his career was spent with the St. Louis Cardinals and he won his third World Series in 1967.
Maris’ career batting average was .260, with 1,325 hits and 275 home runs in 1,463 Major League games.