clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Alex Rodriguez hits 3 home runs 2 days shy of 40th birthday

New York Yankees designated hitter Alex Rodriguez continued his remarkable comeback season with three home runs on Saturday night in New York's 8-5 road win over the Minnesota Twins at Target Field in Minnesota. Just two days shy of his 40th birthday, Rodriguez became the fifth-oldest player to hit three home runs in a game.

Rodriguez hit a solo home run in the fourth inning then a two-run shot in the seventh inning, both against starter Tommy Milone.

Then, trailing 5-4 to open the ninth inning, Rodriguez hit the first pitch from Minnesota closer Glen Perkins to dead center field for his third home run of the game. The Yankees rallied for three more runs in the inning for their 10th win in their last 13 games.

It was the fifth career three-home-run game for Rodriguez, and his first since 2010. Rodriguez hit 30 home runs that season, and hadn't hit more than 18 in any season since that year.

Rodriguez now has 23 home runs in 2015, and is hitting .277/.375/.539. But what made Saturday night so memorable was that it was two days shy of Rodriguez's 40th birthday.

Rodriguez is the fifth-oldest player to hit three home runs in a game, behind Stan Musial (41 years, 229 days in 1962), Jason Giambi (40, 131 in 2011), Reggie Jackson (40, 123 in 1986) and Babe Ruth (40, 108 in 1935).

So far in 2015, Rodriguez has played just six games in the field -- four games and two starts at third base, plus two games and one start at first base. He has played 83 times as the designated hitter, including Saturday night.

"I think DH makes me feel young sometimes; that was a great call Joe [Girardi] made," Rodriguez told Bryan Hoch of "It's just been good to be out there nightly and help my team win."

This has been a milestone year for Rodriguez, who passed Willie Mays in home runs, reached 2,000 RBI and collected his 3,000th career hit. He's now at 677 home runs, 2,027 runs batted in and 3,028 hits.

Up next is likely 2,000 runs. There have only been seven players in baseball history to score 2,000 runs. A-Rod needs 26 more in the Yankees' final 66 games to become the eighth.