On June 26th, 2009…Yankees’ slugger, Alex Rodriguez, launched a two-run homer in the top of the 8th inning against cross-town rivals, the New York Mets, as Yankees fans cheered while Rodriguez ran around the bases knowing he just passed Reggie Jackson on the all-time home run list.
Although Rodriguez passed Reggie Jackson to move into 11th place on the all-time homer list, Jackson, who was in attendance on the night Rodriguez launched number 564th to right field, couldn’t resist giving Rodriguez a hug in the visitors clubhouse at Citi Field.
“Here’s a guy who is probably going to end up with 700 or 800 home runs. I want to enjoy the night tonight and watch my friend hit No. 564 and maybe drop my name in the paper,” said Jackson in an interview after the Yankees 9-1 victory against the Mets.
After surpassing Jackson, a hall of fame baseball player who also played for the New York Yankees; Rodriguez was happy to have the legend there in attendance.
“It’s pretty special to have Reggie here,” Rodriguez said. “I remember the first time I met Reggie was at an Upper Deck Classic in California when I was 17. Reggie is an American icon. He’s done a lot of great things, and all the history he brings to the Yankees is special.”
In that same season, Rodriguez led the Yankees to the World Series where they beat the Philadelphia Phillies for their 27th World Series Championship and the first of Rodriguez’s career. He was also awarded the Babe Ruth Award as the Postseason MVP to cap off his unforgettable season.
Since that memorable June 26th night in New York, Rodriguez has moved up on the list. After five years, Rodriguez sits at number 6 on the all-time home run list with 654. Although the 38-year-old third baseman might have seen his playing days end due to trouble off the field – it is without a doubt an incredible accomplishment of his major league career.
You can follow David Pradel on Twitter: @davepradel_