Orioles' Davis closing in on Bonds' first-half record

Orioles' Davis closing in on Bonds' first-half record
July 13, 2013, 1:30 pm
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Chris Davis needs three home runs on Sunday to tie Barry Bonds' record of 39 first-half home runs. (USA TODAY IMAGES)

Baltimore Orioles slugger Chris Davis became the fourth player ever to hit more than 35 home runs in the first half of a season Saturday, but he's still three big flies shy of Barry Bonds' record.

With his 36th blast, Davis passed Ken Griffey Jr. and Luis Gonzalez, becoming the first player since Bonds in 2001 to hit 35 or more home runs before the All-Star break. Davis is only looking up at Mark McGwire (37 in '98), Reggie Jackson (37 in '69), and Bonds (39 in '01).

Davis just played his 94th game of the season, while Bonds set the record in 81.

The Orioles have just one game remaining before the All-Star break -- Sunday against the Blue Jays -- in which Davis would need to go deep three times to tie Bonds' mark. He'll face Toronto's Josh Johnson, who has allowed eight home runs in 11 starts this year. Davis is 0-for-2 in three career plate appearances against Johnson.

Davis, who is on pace for 61 home runs this year, would need a monster second half to threaten Bonds' single-season home run record of 73. The 27-year-old power hitter made some interesting comments recently, saying that he believes Roger Maris to be the real home run king because "he was the last guy to do it clean."

[REWIND: Chasing Bonds' HR record, Orioles' Davis shows no respect]

Days later, Davis felt the need to deny ever taking performance-enhancing drugs, saying that "it sucks" he had to acknowledge it.

[RELATED: Davis denies PED use]

Bonds is one of four San Francisco Giants to hit 30 or more home runs in the first half of a season, along with Willie McCovey, Kevin Mitchell and Matt Williams. Below is a chart of all 39 times in which an MLB player has reached the 30-home run plateau in the first half of a season since 1916:

RkPlayerYearGHR
1 Barry Bonds 2001 81 39
2 Reggie Jackson 1969 91 37
3 Mark McGwire 1998 80 37
4 Ken Griffey 1998 88 35
5 Luis Gonzalez 2001 87 35
6 Chris Davis 2013 93 35
7 Frank Howard 1969 100 34
8 Mark McGwire 1987 80 33
9 Ken Griffey 1994 87 33
10 Matt Williams 1994 86 33
11 Sammy Sosa 1998 83 33
12 Roger Maris 1961 83 33
13 Babe Ruth 1921 78 32
14 Babe Ruth 1928 78 32
15 Babe Ruth 1930 73 32
16 Frank Thomas 1994 86 32
17 Sammy Sosa 1999 85 32
18 Albert Pujols 2009 90 32
19 David Ortiz 2006 86 31
20 Jose Bautista 2011 84 31
21 Willie Mays 1954 84 31
22 Mike Schmidt 1979 92 31
23 Kevin Mitchell 1989 86 31
24 Mark McGwire 1997 87 31
25 Jose Canseco 1999 82 31
26 Willie McCovey 1969 86 30
27 Willie Stargell 1971 76 30
28 Willie Stargell 1973 86 30
29 Dave Kingman 1976 86 30
30 Brady Anderson 1996 79 30
31 Ken Griffey 1997 84 30
32 Greg Vaughn 1998 87 30
33 Mark McGwire 2000 70 30
34 Barry Bonds 2003 80 30
35 Jim Thome 2006 82 30
36 Alex Rodriguez 2007 85 30
37 Miguel Cabrera 2013 91 30
38 Jimmie Foxx 1932 80 30
39 Harmon Killebrew 1964 76 30

 

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