Prior to tonight, no New York Mets player has ever hit 42 home runs in a single season. That changed in the fourth inning of tonight’s game against the Chicago Cubs, when rookie first baseman Pete Alonso crushed his 42nd homer of the season.
Alonso hit the record-breaking shot on a first-pitch fastball that he drove into the bullpen in right-center field. The blast broke the ice and put the Mets ahead by a run. He accomplished the feat in his 554th plate appearance of the year. Todd Hundley originally set the mark at 41 in the 1996 season, an Carlos Beltran tied him by hitting 41 in 2006.
Beltran released a statement following the home run:
”It’s a pleasure to have a fine young player like Pete Alonso break my record. I have not met Pete personally but people have told me he plays the game with passion and doesn’t give up on any at-bat. He has had great success in his first year. Again, my congrats, Pete.”
Hundley also released a statement:
“To me, he’s more than a power hitter, he’s a pure hitter. I have seen five or six of his games and he keeps getting better and better. He has just had a tremendous year. Congrats, Pete you deserve all the records you have broken.”
The record is the latest in a long list of accomplishments that the rookie has racked up in his first big league season. Alonso won the Home Run Derby at Progressive Field, was named the MLB Rookie of the Month in April and in June, and set the National League rookie record by hitting 40 home runs. Next up, Alonso will set his sights on Aaron Judge’s major league rookie record of 52 home runs as he tries to help the Mets reach the postseason for the first time since 2016.