Gardner clocks Yanks’ 15,000th homer

Ordinarily you might think Brett Gardner would be one of the last players on the Yankees who would have hit an historic home run. Gardner was known primarily as a singles hitter with occasional pop, but this year the outfielder has displayed much more muscle at the plate.

Gardner, who has had his struggles lately while coming back from an abdominal injury, swung his way into the franchise record book in the fifth inning Sunday when he connected on a 3-2 fastball from Blue Jays righthander Drew Hutchison for a home run to right field that unlocked a 1-1 score.

It was the 17th home run of the year for Gardner, whose previous career high for homers in a season was eight in 2013. Even more importantly, Gardner’s blow off 94-mph heat was the Yankees’ 15,000th home run, the most in major-league history. The Yanks had gotten to 14,999 in the first inning on a solo homer to right by Brian McCann.

Gardner joins the list of Yankees with milestone homers:

1,000: Bob Muesel, off Boston’s Paul Zahniser in a 4-2 victory Sept. 2, 1925 at Yankee Stadium.

5,000: Mickey Mantle, off the Tigers’ Billy Hoeft in a 10-8 loss Aug. 8, 1954 at Detroit.

10,000: Claudell Washington, off Minnesota’s Jeff Reardon in a 7-6 victory April 20, 1988 at Minneapolis.

The Elias Sports Bureau reports that the Yankees are the only team in major-league history with more than 14,000 home runs. The Giants are second, more than 1,000 homers behind.

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