Rookie Pete Alonso Is The MLB Home Run Leader

By: Zachary Diamond
Posted: September 24, 2019

Everyone, stop what you’re doing. Take out your phone immediately and look up “Pete Alonso” on google.

C’mon now, you were just scrolling on Instagram, so I know you have enough data. Pull up Baseball-Reference or Fangraphs or whatever you use to look up baseball stats. They are worth your time. PETE ALONSO IS THE BEST THING TO HAPPEN TO THE NEW YORK METS THIS SEASON, AND I’M REALLY EXCITED, OK? I JUST WANT EVERYONE TO KNOW ABOUT PETE, HE’S SO GOOOD.

With the playoffs not looking likely for the Mets (what’s new?), Alonso has been a lot of fun to watch. While Mets fandom is generally emotionally abusive and perpetually disappointing, Alonso has been suspiciously phenomenal.

In his rookie season, Alonso has hit 50 home runs, which leads the entire MLB. Known as the “Polar Bear” to Mets fans, Alonso is doing things with the bat that no player in New York Mets history has done before. The Polar Bear has been breaking records all season, and there are no signs of him stopping.

Coming into this season, Darryl Strawberry held the Mets rookie home run record with 26 home runs, hit during the 1983 season. In only three months, on June 23, Alonso shattered Strawberry’s record, when Alonso hit his 27th home run. Simultaneously, Alonso also broke the record for most home runs hit by a rookie in the NL hit before the All-Star break.

Darryl Strawberry 1986
Darryl Strawberry 1986/ Barry Colla Photography

Alonso was selected for the Home Run Derby, and won, defeating Vlad Guerrero Jr. in the final round. A player for the Mets hadn’t won the Home Run Derby since Strawberry was co-champion with Wally Joyner in 1986.

Cody Bellinger held the National League (NL) rookie home run record when he hit 39 home runs in 2017 for the Los Angeles Dodgers. On August 18th, with a month left in the season, Alonso hit his 40th home run, breaking Bellinger’s NL record.

In 1987, Darryl Strawberry hit 39 home runs, which would be the Mets home run record until 1996, when catcher Todd Hundley hit 41 home runs. In 2006, legendary outfielder Carlos Beltrán tied Hundley with 41 home runs. I think you know where this is about to go, right?

Usp Mlb: New York Mets At Detroit Tigers S Bba Usa Mi
Outfielder Carlos Beltran while with the Mets in 2010. (PHOTO: Rick Osentoski/USA TODAY Sports)

On August 27, with a month left in the season, Pete Alonso hit his 42 home run, breaking Beltrán and Hundley’s Mets record. According to The New York Times, the Mets are the only team whose current single-season home run record was set by a rookie. Alonso, in his first season in the majors, has completely bulldozed through the Mets and NL rookie home run records.

While it seems like there is nothing else Pete needs to do, there’s still one record he hasn’t broken yet. Pete is working on the all-time rookie home run record. Aaron Judge of the Yankees hit 52 home runs in his first full season in 2017, breaking Mark McGwire’s rookie record of 49 home runs from 1987. Pete Alonso has 50 home runs and needs 2 home runs to tie Judge.

There are 6 games left in the season, and Alonso needs to hit 3 home runs to break the all-time rookie home run record. It is very reasonable to suggest that Alonso could tie Judge this last week of the season. It is slightly less reason for me to suggest he could break Judge’s record (but still reasonable, look at this dude).

Meanwhile, Alonso is holding on to the MLB lead in home runs for the 2019 season. Eugenio Suárez of the Cincinnati Reds has 48 dingers, 2 behind Alonso. Bellinger has 46 home runs but is unlikely to surpass Suárez or Alonso with such little time left in the season. It’ll be a Suárez and Alonso race for the home run lead, which Alonso has the upper-hand in at the moment.

Pete Alonso’s 50 home runs lead the entire MLB, historically during his rookie season. Alonso is the best homegrown home run hitter the Mets have ever developed. The Mets franchise has been around for 57 years, and all it took was one season for Alonso to break all their records. Alonso is only 24 years old, and Mets fans are insanely lucky to have this guy playing first base for the Mets for the foreseeable future.

Pete Alonso
Pete Alonso of the Mets hitting a home run
(Kathy Willens/Associated Press)

To recap, Alonso has broken the Mets rookie home run record, the Mets franchise single-season home run record, the NL rookie home run record, currently leads the majors in home runs, and is 2 away from tying and 3 away from breaking the all-time rookie home run record (all in this season). Basically, Alonso hits dingers.

I have a message for Aaron Judge. Pete Alonso is coming for your record. If Pete Alonso is a polar bear, Judge is the steady diet of seals that polar bears munch on.

Even if Alonso doesn’t break Judge’s record, he is still looking like the best power hitter to ever come out of the Mets farm system and is 203 home runs away from breaking Darryl Strawberry’s all-time Mets home run record of 252. Based on Pete’s rate of homers, he should accomplish that by 2024.

For more thoughts and opinions by Zachary, check out his author page or twitter.

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