kids encyclopedia robot

500 home run club facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
20060825 Barry Bonds follow through
Barry Bonds joined the 500 home run club in 2001 and set a new career home run record of 762 in 2007.

In Major League Baseball (MLB), the 500 home run club is a term given to the group of batters who have hit 500 or more regular-season home runs in their careers. On August 11, 1929, Babe Ruth became the first member of the club. Ruth ended his career with 714 home runs. This record stood from 1935 until Hank Aaron broke it in 1974. Aaron's ending career total, 755, stayed the record until Barry Bonds set the current mark of 762 during the 2007 season. Albert Pujols is the most recent to reach 500 home runs; he hit his 500th home run on April 22, 2014. Twenty-six players are members of the 500 home run club.

Of these 26 players, 14 were right-handed batters, 10 were left-handed, and 2 were switch hitters (meaning they could bat from either side of the plate). The San Francisco Giants are the only franchise to have four players reach 500 home runs while on their roster: Mel Ott while the team was in New York, Willie Mays, Willie McCovey, and most recently Bonds. Four 500 home run club members—Aaron, Mays, Eddie Murray, and Rafael Palmeiro—are also members of the 3,000 hit club. Sheffield's 500th home run was his first career home run with the New York Mets, the first time that a player's 500th home run was also his first with his franchise. Alex Rodriguez, at 32 years and 8 days, was the youngest player to hit 500. Ted Williams, at 41 years and 291 days, was the oldest.

Being a member of the 500 home run club is sometimes described as a guarantee of entry into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Some believe the milestone has become less meaningful in recent years. Four club members who are now eligible for election to the Hall of Fame—Bonds, Sammy Sosa, Mark McGwire and Palmeiro—have not been elected. Eligibility requires that a player has "been retired five seasons" or be dead for at least six months. Some believe the milestone has become less important with the large number of new members; 10 players joined the club from 1999 to 2009. Also, several of these recent members have had ties to performance-enhancing drugs. Some believe that by not electing McGwire to the Hall, the voters were starting a "guideline" on how they would treat players from the "Steroid Era". Since then, Bonds and Sosa have also failed to earn election. Most recently, Palmeiro became the first club member to be dropped from the Hall of Fame ballot, failing to earn enough votes (5% of votes cast) in the 2014 election to stay on the ballot.

Key

Player Name of the player
HR Career home runs
Date Date of the player's 500th home run
Team The batter's team for his 500th home run
Seasons The seasons this player played in the major leagues
Elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame
* Denotes player who is still active

Members

Statistics up to date as of June 8, 2014
Babe Ruth2
Babe Ruth was the first player to reach 500 home runs and set a career home run mark of 714 that stood until 1974.
Albert Pujols on April 14, 2012
Albert Pujols is the most recent player to hit 500 home runs, one of 11 to reach the milestone from 1999 to 2014.
Player HR Date Team Seasons Ref(s)
Bonds, BarryBarry Bonds 762 April 17, 2001 San Francisco Giants 1986–2007
Aaron, HankHank Aaron 755 July 14, 1968 Atlanta Braves 1954–1976
Ruth, BabeBabe Ruth 714 August 11, 1929 New York Yankees 1914–1935
Mays, WillieWillie Mays 660 September 13, 1965 San Francisco Giants 1951–1973
Griffey, Jr., KenKen Griffey, Jr. 630 June 20, 2004 Cincinnati Reds 1989–2010
Rodriguez, AlexAlex Rodriguez* 618 August 4, 2007 New York Yankees 1994–
Thome, JimJim Thome 612 September 16, 2007 Chicago White Sox 1991–2012
Sosa, SammySammy Sosa 609 April 4, 2003 Chicago Cubs 1989–2005, 2007
Robinson, FrankFrank Robinson 586 September 13, 1971 Baltimore Orioles 1956–1976
McGwire, MarkMark McGwire 583 August 5, 1999 St. Louis Cardinals 1986–2001
Killebrew, HarmonHarmon Killebrew 573 August 10, 1971 Minnesota Twins 1954–1975
Palmeiro, RafaelRafael Palmeiro 569 May 11, 2003 Texas Rangers 1986–2005
Jackson, ReggieReggie Jackson 563 September 17, 1984 California Angels 1967–1987
Ramirez, MannyManny Ramirez 555 May 31, 2008 Boston Red Sox 1993–2011
Schmidt, MikeMike Schmidt 548 April 18, 1987 Philadelphia Phillies 1972–1989
Mantle, MickeyMickey Mantle 536 May 14, 1967 New York Yankees 1951–1968
Foxx, JimmieJimmie Foxx 534 September 24, 1940 Boston Red Sox 1925–1942, 1944–1945
Williams, TedTed Williams 521 June 17, 1960 Boston Red Sox 1939–1942, 1946–1960
McCovey, WillieWillie McCovey 521 June 30, 1978 San Francisco Giants 1959–1980
Thomas, FrankFrank Thomas 521 June 28, 2007 Toronto Blue Jays 1990–2008
Banks, ErnieErnie Banks 512 May 12, 1970 Chicago Cubs 1953–1971
Mathews, EddieEddie Mathews 512 July 14, 1967 Houston Astros 1952–1968
Ott, MelMel Ott 511 August 1, 1945 New York Giants 1926–1947
Sheffield, GaryGary Sheffield 509 April 17, 2009 New York Mets 1988–2009
Pujols, AlbertAlbert Pujols* 507 April 22, 2014 Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 2001–
Murray, EddieEddie Murray 504 September 6, 1996 Baltimore Orioles 1977–1997
kids search engine
500 home run club Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.