For the first six years of his career, the aura of Giancarlo Stanton's mammoth home runs may have been more impressive than his actual output, as the Marlins' hulking slugger entered 2017 with a single-season-best of a relatively modest 37 home runs. It didn't appear this season would be much different when he opened the year with seven straight games without a home run and then had separate droughts of 11 and 14 games in the season's first three months.
He did manage 21 home runs in that time, however, but starting with a two-homer outing on July 5, Stanton embarked on a torrid stretch in which he went deep 12 times in 17 games. In August another burst: 11 in 12 games, leaving him with 44 after 118 games and stirring talk that 60—and maybe even 70—was in play.
First, though, Stanton had to get to 50, which he did on Aug. 27, marking just the ninth time anyone had gotten to that number before Sept. 1. He has 59 through Sept. 29.