On July 14: Long-Time Teammates Mathews, Aaron Joined the 500 HR Club in Back-to-Back Seasons
Eddie Mathews spent his first 15 years with the Braves franchise, a teammate with Hank Aaron. During that time the franchise moved from Boston to Milwaukee and finally Atlanta.
But the Hall of Fame third baseman was as a member of the Houston Astros when he became the seventh member of baseball's 500 Home Run Club on July 14, 1967 against the Giants at the expense of Hall of Famer Juan Marichal.
And 365 days later, Aaron, still with the Braves , hit No. 500 in his career, becoming the eighth player to reach that milestone. Aaron finished with a career total of 755, which stood as the all-time home run record until Barry Bonds broke the mark in 2007. Bonds, who retired at the end of that season, finished his career with 762 home runs.
Aaron connected off Mike McCormick, a three-run shot that was the difference in the Braves 4-2 victory against the Giants.
The 500 Home Run Club has since expanded to 27, including Albert Pujols, the lone active player. The 40-year-old Pujols is in the final year of his contract with the Angels, and will go into the season with 656 home runs, four shy of Willie Mays. While he would seem set to pass Mays and movedinto No. 5 on the all-time list, he is 40 home runs shy of Alex Rodriguez, who is No. 4 on the all-time list.
As an aside, there are only two pitchers who are in the 500 Home Runs Allowed Club. Jamie Moyer, whose 25-year big-league career ended with a cameo appearance with the Rockies in 2012, gave up 522 home runs.
Hall of Fame pitcher Robin Roberts served up 505 home runs in his 19-year career, which ran from 1948-66. CC Sabathia (No. 18, 382) and Ervin Santana (No. 42, 322) both retired after the 2019 season.
The leader among active pitchers is Cole Hamels, who signed a free-agent contract with the Braves in December. Hamels has given up 310 home runs, 50th on the all-time list.