A Historic Night

In case you missed it or have been living under a rock, a New York sports icon made history last night. Aaron Judge of the New York Yankees launched his 62nd home run of the season last night against the Texas Rangers in Texas.

With home run number 62, number 99 is now the American League single-season home run king. For weeks now, people in attendance at home and on the road, in addition to the millions of fans watching the games at home, have been waiting with bated breath for the historic record-breaking moment.

On the heels of the Yankees' victory in game 1 of their scheduled doubleheader against the Rangers, it happened. In his first at-bat in the first inning of game 2, Aaron Judge made history; the Yankees immediately took a 1-0 lead in the game, and Rangers pitcher Jesus Rafael Tinoco, whether he wanted to or not, became the answer to a future trivia question.

Divisional Round - Boston Red Sox v New York Yankees - Game Three

Bigger Than the Game

The Yankees would go on to lose game 2 of the doubleheader by a score of 3-2 but in the grand scheme of things, the game wasn't important. The Yankees already secured the American League East title and will wait to see who they will play in the divisional round of the MLB Playoffs, so for everybody watching, the moment was bigger than the game.

In a way, it was all kind of ironic, the man who in both his stature and presence is larger than life, accomplished something larger than the game itself playing for the most successful franchise in the history of the sport. Truth be told it couldn't have happened to a greater player; Judge is everything you want in a superstar for a team, a professional in every sense of the word, and by the far the strongest leader in that clubhouse.

Antique Baseball Items
Getty Images/iStockphoto

The Price of History

For every moment in history, particularly in sports, the price of history is great. No, I don't mean the stature of the moment, I mean the actual price....of the ball.

Yes, for the lucky fan who was in the right place at the right time, or more likely he just chose to buy the right seat, this individual now sits in the advantageous position of either holding onto the ball himself or selling it to the highest bidder. Rumors had speculated about how much the ball could be worth before the moment even came, then within moments of the fan being ushered away by security, prospective buyers were already putting forward offers in the $2 million dollar range.

That's a world-changing sum of money for one little baseball, but the bar has been set, now it's all about the waiting game to see what the lucky fan will choose to do with the prize.

Thinkstock/Thomas Northcut
Thinkstock/Thomas Northcut

A Strange Game

Baseball as a sport more so than any other sport seems to have an odd or maybe even strange association with numbers. I don't mean things like statistics-wise, I mean in the sense of time. Not sure what I mean? That's fine, I'll explain.

Aaron Judge's historic home run last night happened in game 161 of the 162-game regular season. This historic moment comes 61 years after Roger Maris hit his 61st home run in 1961, which at the time broke Babe Ruth's record of 60 home runs in one season. The Yankees' season record after last night now sits at 99 wins and 62 loses with one game left to play. In addition, there's the other little detail that Roger Maris wore the number 9 and Judge wears 99. Maybe you can call this all coincidence, but I find it much more fun to believe that this was all just meant to happen this way. I'd say it's pretty close to magical. With all of these things considered, I know without any shadow of a doubt, that that historic baseball is worth a lot, maybe it's worth more than that.

LOOK: 50 images of winning moments from sports history

Sometimes images are the best way to honor the figures we've lost. When tragedy swiftly reminds us that sports are far from the most consequential thing in life, we can still look back on an athlete's winning moment that felt larger than life, remaining grateful for their sacrifice on the court and bringing joy to millions.

Read on to explore the full collection of 50 images Stacker compiled showcasing various iconic winning moments in sports history. Covering achievements from a multitude of sports, these images represent stunning personal achievements, team championships, and athletic perseverance.

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