Miguel Cabrera’s 509th Career Homer Ties Gary Sheffield All-Time | Reminds Us Of The Legacy of Bro Bombers Continued Today
The 40-year-old designated hitter is soaking up all the memories on his farewell tour. Cabrera has three seasons before 2023 where he’s hit 10 homers or less, but he’s just two homers away from another ranking bump and three blasts from tying the next MLBbro.
The all-time home run leaderboard is filled with Black ball players.
Barry Bonds stands atop the leaderboard with 762 dingers, a feat that may never be broken.
The Bro Bombers that follow are legendary slugger Henry “Hank” Aaron (755), Willie Mays (660), Ken Griffey Jr. (630), Frank Robinson (586), Reggie Jackson (563), Willie McCovey (521), Frank Thomas (521), and Ernie Banks (512).
The commonality between Cabrera and almost all of these players is that they played at least 20 seasons in the Majors to reach their marks. Banks and Thomas played 19 seasons in the bigs.
Significance of Bro Bombers
When Negro League players and Black players breaking the color barrier in the Majors began to get coverage in the newspapers, it was clear the distinction between how the writers would categorize the players. If the player was white, they were often lauded for their intelligence and played the game the right way. But, Black players’ accomplishments were frequently attributed solely to their physical prowess, underscoring a glaring disparity in the portrayal of their achievements.
Amid the suffocating limitations that writers and baseball enthusiasts sought to impose upon them, these remarkable individuals rose to triumph, defying the constraints imposed upon them. And standing tall among these legends, it was Aaron who ignited a fervor, illuminating boundless potential.
“If I was white, all America would be proud of me,” Aaron said almost a year before he passed Ruth. “But I am Black.”
Hank Aaron Breaks Babe Ruth Home Run Record With 715
On April 8, 1974, the Atlanta legend became the new home run king, hitting his 715th homer and surpassing Babe Ruth, who’d held the record for 59 years.
“A breaker of records and racial barriers, his remarkable legacy will continue to inspire countless athletes and admirers for generations to come,” said former president Jimmy Carter, who often attended Braves games with his wife, Rosalynn.
Irrespective of one’s racial or ethnic background, the magnitude of Aaron’s feat in surpassing Ruth was universally acknowledged, serving as a potent source of inspiration for aspiring young Black athletes.
“The former Home Run King wasn’t handed his throne,” said former President George W. Bush, a one-time owner of the Texas Rangers, who presented Aaron in 2002 with the Presidential Medal of Freedom — the nation’s highest civilian honor. “He grew up poor and faced racism as he worked to become one of the greatest baseball players of all time. Hank never let the hatred he faced consume him.”
The inspiration would birth the next king of swat in Bonds.
On August 7, 2007, Bonds clobbered his 756th homer to overtake Aaron on the leaderboard.
“[He was] a trailblazer through adversity and setting an example for all of us African-American ballplayers who came after you,” Bonds gave praise to Aaron.
Can another MLBbro break the record?
The closest active MLBbro to Cabrera’s newest mark is Giancarlo Stanton, with 396 blasts. Stanton has played in the Majors for 14 years and currently averages 23 homers per season, which puts him on pace for 534 homers through his 20th season. His injury history, however, leaves much doubt as to whether he would reach the necessary number of seasons played.
When it comes to power stats, few players can compete with Stanton.
The 33-year-old designated hitter leads the Marlins in total home runs (59) since 2017, and he only played one of those seasons in Miami, with the remainder being for the Yankees.
Stanton has 76 career blasts with a 113 or more miles per hour exit velocity, which is the most tracked by Statcast (2015, including playoffs), ahead of teammate, current American League home run King, and MLBbro Aaron Judge.
The Bronx Bomber also has the most 460 or more-foot homers tracked by Statcast (2015, including playoffs) with 18.
Judge has the best chance to surpass Stanton and Cabrera. After his historic 2022 campaign, he currently averages 30 homers per season while only having played eight years in the Majors thus far, which puts him on pace for 602 career homers through 20 seasons of play. That would place him 10th all-time, just seven homers shy of tying Sammy Sosa.