By Brian Murphy
Albert Pujols’ time in the Majors is filled with milestones, incredible feats and championship glory. And as Pujols nears the end of his illustrious 22-year career, he is getting ready to accentuate it by joining the most exclusive home run club in baseball history. Of the more than 20,000 players who have participated in an MLB game, only three have reached 700 homers.
Here is a quick look at that short list of legends.
1) Barry Bonds: 762
700th HR: Sept. 17, 2004
No player went from 600 to 700 home runs quicker than Bonds. He needed only 308 games — less than two full seasons — to go from one landmark to the next. No. 700 came on an offspeed pitch from the Padres right-hander Jake Peavy, who also served up Nos. 616 and 638 during the 2003 season.
2) Hank Aaron: 755
700th HR: July 21, 1973
Aaron sprinted to 700 homers in July 1973; his monumental dinger came at the end of a stretch where he went deep six times in eight games. He would go on to hit 13 homers over the final 44 games that season, leading to a long offseason wait until he got a chance to tie Babe Ruth’s then-record of 714 home runs. Aaron would match the Babe in his first at-bat of the ’74 season.
3) Babe Ruth: 714
700th HR: July 13, 1934
Ruth’s 123 homers versus the Detroit Tigers were his most against any team, so it makes sense that it was a Tigers pitcher, right-hander Tommy Bridges, on the mound for No. 700. At that point, Lou Gehrig and Rogers Hornsby were the only players in AL/NL history who had hit even 300 homers.