Nothing has distinguished the 2019 Major League Baseball season more than the power surge that’s trivialized just about every home run record in the history of the game.
For whatever reason – the ball is juiced, the hitters are stronger, the pitchers are inadequate – hardly an inning goes by on any given night without someone going Bambino in an MLB park.
On Wednesday night at Baltimore’s Camden Yards, the Orioles Jonathan Villar smacked a three-run home run in the seventh inning. That was the 6,106th blast launched across the Majors this season – a new record. The previous mark was set in 2017, but before that the milestone was 5,693 homers in 2000.
By the time the night was over, the new record stood at 6,125. According to ESPN Stats & Information research, there have been 661 more home runs hit through Sept. 11 than in any other season in major league history.
And there are almost three weeks left in the season.
“Somebody told me after the homer. That’s unbelievable,” Villar said told reporters after the game against the Los Angeles Dodgers. “That’s impressive for me, not for me, it’s for the team because we hit it here. That’s awesome. They put the bat in the Hall of Fame. I’m excited for that.’
“It’s not every day that happens, that only happens one time. I feel excited because that’s very important, not only for me but for the team. My bat is going to the Hall of Fame. … I am going to have that my whole career. That’s unbelievable!”
Hey, no one has contributed more to setting the record than the Orioles. They’ve allowed 280 homers, another single-season record.
“The home runs are up everywhere and it’s tough to keep the ball in the ballpark. It’s tough to keep the ball in this ballpark on a humid night when the ball was traveling,” said Orioles manager Brandon Hyde. “I’ve seen enough home runs here from the other side, so it’s nice to get one from our side.”
More from the Elias Sports Bureau: A total of 16 teams will likely set single-season homer records; 12 teams set the previous record for their franchises in 2000. Five teams – the Dodgers, Twins, Yankees, Padres and Astros – have already accomplished it and 18 teams have already hit at least 200 dingers with five more on the way.
The Twins lead the majors with 277, the most for any team in a single-season, breaking the record set by the Yankees (267) last season. Mets rookie Pete Alonso leads the Majors with 47 and no rookie has ever led MLB in homers.
Hitters slammed 1,228 homers in August (74 by the Yankees), the most ever hit in any month. That broke a record (1,142) that was just set in June. There have been at least 1,000 homers in each month this season. That’s also the most 1,000-homer months in a season in MLB history.
And it didn’t take long for home run records to be broken this season. The Seattle Mariners hit at least one in 20 straight games in March and April. Then the Yankees had one in 31 straight from May into June.
Alonso’s 47 homers are not only a Mets single-season record, but its an NL record for rookies, breaking Cody Bellinger’s mark of 39 in 2017. Kansas City’s Jorge Solar (43) is the first player in Royals history to hit at least 40.