Seventy five years ago today, Babe Ruth hit his last home run. In fact, he hit the last 3 home runs of his career on that day in 1935. It was only the second 3-home run game of Ruth's illustrious career and it occurred when he was 40 years old. Robert W. Creamer has a nice description of the game in his biography of Ruth (h/t Rob Neyer).
Back in September of 2007, Andy wrote a nice and timely post about the oldest players to hit 3 homeruns in a game. In the intervening years, the resources available here at baseball-reference.com have greatly expanded and we can now conclusively create a complete list. First lets take a look at the list provided by the PI game finder (1920-1939, 1952-2010).
|1||Stan Musial||41.229||1962-07-08||STL||NYM||W 15-1||5||4||3||3||0||0||3||4||1||0||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0.122||4.045||.270||4||LF|
|2||Reggie Jackson||40.123||1986-09-18||CAL||KCR||W 18-3||6||4||4||3||0||0||3||7||2||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||0||0||0.175||5.664||.348||4||DH|
|3||Babe Ruth||40.108||1935-05-25||BSN||PIT||L 7-11||4||4||3||4||0||0||3||6||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0.000||0.000||3||RF|
|4||Dave Winfield||39.192||1991-04-13||CAL||MIN||W 15-9||6||6||4||5||1||0||3||6||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0.340||5.613||.538||4||RF|
|5||Frank Thomas||39.113||2007-09-17||TOR||BOS||W 6-1||4||4||3||3||0||0||3||5||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0.228||3.841||.660||4||DH|
|6||Bob Thurman||39.096||1956-08-18||CIN||MLN||W 13-4||5||5||4||4||1||0||3||4||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0.219||4.050||.438||3||LF|
|7||Steve Finley||39.047||2004-04-28||ARI||CHC||L 3-4||4||4||3||3||0||0||3||3||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0.539||2.886||.930||5||CF|
|8||Ted Williams||38.287||1957-06-13||BOS||CLE||W 9-3||5||5||3||3||0||0||3||5||0||0||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0.347||4.273||.538||3||LF|
|9||Ted Williams||38.251||1957-05-08||BOS||CHW||W 4-1||5||4||3||3||0||0||3||4||1||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0.280||3.511||.446||3||LF|
|10||Ty Cobb||38.138||1925-05-05||DET||SLB||W 14-8||6||6||4||6||1||0||3||5||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||0.000||0.000||3||CF|
|11||Lee Lacy||38.059||1986-06-08||BAL||NYY||W 18-9||6||6||4||4||0||0||3||6||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0.216||3.785||.333||2||RF|
|12||Barry Bonds||38.034||2002-08-27||SFG||COL||W 7-4||5||4||4||4||1||0||3||3||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0.481||4.116||.856||3||LF|
From 1871-1919 and 1940-1951 there weren't many seasons of 3+ home runs by players 38 years or older. The HR logs for those seasons reveal that no player 38 or older recorded a 3+ HR game during that time. Therefore, the PI list above is complete. Despite the passage of time, longer careers, better conditioning and other things*, only 2 players have been able to match the last hurrah of the famous Rajah.
This entry was posted on Tuesday, May 25th, 2010 at 3:00 am and is filed under Game Finders, Home Runs. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.