Posted: Thursday April 04, 2002 3:29 AM
Updated: Thursday April 04, 2002 9:49 PM
Barry Bonds' recent blasts are impressive, but Sammy Sosa's consistency is remarkable. AP
By Jacob Luft, CNNSI.com
The single-season home run record has been passed like a baton in a relay race the past few seasons.
Mark McGwire shattered Roger Maris' mark with 70 longballs in 1998. Barry Bonds followed suit with 73 of his own last season.
Sammy Sosa has yet to wear the single-season home run crown, and possibly never will considering the start Bonds is off to this season. But in terms of a sustained power binge, Sosa is on a historic pace of his own.
The Cubs slugger already has displaced Babe Ruth and McGwire for most home runs hit in a six-, seven- or eight-year span. He needs a mere 41 bombs this season to tie McGwire for the most in a five-year span (245). Barring injury, he is a virtual lock to own that mark.
Sosa also can catch McGwire for the four-year record with 68 homers. The three-year mark would require Sosa to hit 79, while the two-year record is a more plausible 71 homers away.
Sosa's main competition will be Bonds, who needs only 62 this season to tie Big Mac for the two-year record and 71 for the three-year mark.