Career Home Run Record vs. The Young Slugger

Last time that we visited, we looked at whether the Career Home Run Record was able to be broken by some key veterans. We discussed why each of them were unable to even have a shot at Barry Bonds. What we dive in to this time are the young players. Those up and coming sluggers who love to corkscrew themselves into the ground as they attempt to hit the baseball as if it were the bully that picked on them in middle school. So let’s take a look at those young players in the league.

Jose Abreu:

This name is not that hard to explain, he is too old. Jose Abreu has dazzled the MLB fan base with his power, and he leads the league right now with 31 home runs; however, he is a 27 year-old rookie. Even if he kept the pace he has for his entire career he would have to average around 54 home runs for the next 14 seasons, into his age 41 season. Next.

Giancarlo Stanton:

This is the name that everyone is talking about right now. The show that he put on at the Home Run Derby alerted everybody who was unaware of Stanton’s massive power. Sure he can hit a home run projected over 500 feet, but can he hit home runs consistently and stay healthy? A feat easier said than done, Stanton has shown in the past that he has a tendency to get hurt. The only “full” season he has had was when he played in 150 games in 2011 and hit 34 home runs, back when was known as Mike. Regardless he has shown his power even when injured, hitting 37 home runs in 2012 while only playing 123 games. Yes, Stanton is a phenomenal athlete that should be a big name in the MLB for years to come, but there are issues.

Stanton can absolutely kill the ball, but he has never hit over 40 home runs. As Bonds and other high-end home run hitters have shown, you have to hit quite a few 40-HR seasons to make it high on the all-time list. Let’s say he does have a few 40 home run seasons during his career. What will he have to do to reach Bonds’ record? If he continues his home run pace this year he will end up with 36 at season’s end. That would leave him with 153 overall home runs, which would mean he would have to average 38 home runs every year into his age 41 season. Not unmanageable, but very unlikely. With the way that Stanton has struggled with injuries and even eclipse 38 home runs in a season, this slugger will not be claiming the home run crown any time soon.

Mike Trout:

The “Millville Meteor” has been one of the hottest topics in baseball the past three years. From his out-of-nowhere performance to his debatable second place finishes in the MVP voting, Trout has become a star topic in the MLB. Home runs has been a good part of his record as he has had a 30 home run season two years ago and is on pace for 37 this year. Trout does not have the pure power that Stanton does, but he does have enough to get the ball out of the yard. He has been healthy throughout his short career, and could potentially grow stronger since he is 22 years old. Does he have enough to break the record though?

Like Stanton, Trout has never broken the 40 home run threshold in his career. This is a must-have for anybody who wishes to be the home run king. He could improve his power in the future, so let’s assume he obtains the ability to hit 40+ home runs in a season. He is on pace to finish this year with 99 career home runs, which would leave him 663 home runs to go. If he played into his age 41 season, he would have to average 36.8 home runs a year to break the record. This seems unlikely since he has yet to pass 37 home runs in a season. It is interesting though, that Trout might actually have a better chance than Stanton. (Unless Stanton goes to the Red Sox, then he has a much better chance than Trout)

There is no chance that Barry Bonds’ home run record is broken by a player in the major leagues right now. The prime candidates are either too old, injured, or not on a good enough pace to beat the odds. Maybe a new home run king will arrive in the 2015 MLB draft, or perhaps he is in the minor leagues right now. Regardless, MLB fans will have to wait a little bit longer to meet their new king.

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