Shortly after the Yankees' 5-4 victory over the Red Sox in 10 innings on Sunday, the third baseman was standing in the home clubhouse flipping a baseball -- the baseball -- the one Rodriguez clubbed for his 536th home run to tie Mickey Mantle for 13th place on baseball's all-time list.
"Some of these names are very humbling. It's pretty special," Rodriguez said. "Every person that I run into in the streets always has a big smile when you mention Mickey Mantle. It seems like he was everyone's favorite player. Even the grounds crew guys said, 'He was my hero. You tied my hero today.' I get that so much with Mickey Mantle."
Rodriguez hit the milestone home run leading off the bottom of the second inning, facing Tim Wakefield. A-Rod turned on an 0-1 knuckleball and cracked a line drive to the lower deck in left field, logging his 18th homer of the season and equaling the Mick.
The display board in right-center field showed a split screen of Rodriguez and Mantle with overlay text of "536" as Rodriguez emerged from being greeted in the first-base dugout, doffing his batting helmet briefly before returning to the bench. Mantle played for the Yankees from 1951-68, earning induction to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1974.
It has been a big year of milestones for Rodriguez, who has passed Ted Williams (521), Willie McCovey (521) and Jimmie Foxx (534) this season. The shot was also Rodriguez's 191st as a Yankee, tying him with Tino Martinez for 15th place on the franchise's all-time list. The run scored was the 1,552nd of Rodriguez's career, moving him past Reggie Jackson for 49th place on the all-time list.
Earlier in the day, Rodriguez was named to his 12th All-Star Game, leading the Major Leagues in online votes cast for the second consecutive season.
Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less