by Kyle Kessell
There’s a question most baseball fans ask themselves, “Who truly holds the record for most home runs in a single season?” Controversy surrounds this topic like flies around a molding piece of fruit. A molding piece of fruit is a great analogy as the steroid era has tainted this record for most fans of the sport.
For the fan who is against all the players caught using some form of enhancing supplement, Roger Maris is your single season home run champ. Maris ranks seventh on this list blasting an astonishing 61 dingers in 1961. At the time, this broke Babe Ruth’s record set back in 1927, a record that stood for 34 years.
Three hitters sit above Maris on the single season home run list, Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa and Barry Bonds. Bond currently holds the record with 73 bombs in 2001, at the height of the steroid era. These three sluggers battle it out for home run supremacy from 1998-2001. 98’ and 99’ had McGwire and Sosa dueling it out with McGwire always coming out on top with the first 70 home run season in 98’. He had a still impressive 65 homers the following year. Sosa is the only player to have three 60 plus home run seasons in MLB history, yet he never led the league in home runs either season.
This surge of home runs was later explained, and contributed to, the discovery of the how much of a role enhancing supplements played during this era. Leading to Sosa, Bonds and McGwire left out of the Hall of Fame despite the mind-blowing stats they put up during the late 90s and early 2000s. This is an era baseball wants to forget, and one current MLB star wants to help everyone to just that.
Marlins standout, Giancarlo Stanton, is a 27-year-old phenomenon who’s power has left bystanders’ jaws dropped with his monstrous jacks since the start of his major league career in 2010. Stanton stated in an interview earlier this season that he believes Maris to be the true record holder and wants to pass him to become the single season home run king.
In the post steroid era, Ryan Howard came closest to Maris’ record with 58 home runs in 2007. Jose Bautista comes in second with 54 dingers, and as of early September Giancarlo sits at 53 round trippers. He is on pace with Maris when he had his record setting season. In 31 games, Stanton has sent 20 baseballs past the outfield wall, and now finally having a full season to hit them, we can see if Giancarlo has what it takes to set new records.