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Marcus Semien Hits Record-Setting 44th Home Run

Sep 29, 2021
Marcus Semien's 44th home run of the 2021 season set a major-league record for the most by a second baseman.

TORONTO (AP) — Blue Jays slugger and former Cal standout Marcus Semien set a major league record for home runs by a second baseman when he hit his 44th of the season on Wednesday night against Yankees ace Gerrit Cole.

Semien's homer, a two-run drive into the left field bullpen, broke a tie with Davey Johnson (1973 for Atlanta), and gave Toronto an early lead in their September showdown against an AL wild-card rival.

Rogers Hornsby (42 home runs in 1922) and Brian Dozier (42 in 2016) are the only other second basemen in big league history to reach the 40-homer mark.

Semien's homer was Toronto's ML-leading 249th of the season.

Four of Semien's home runs this season have come while he was playing shortstop. But the nine-year veteran, an All-Star for the first time this season, has made 142 of his 157 starts at second base.

Semien signed a one-year, $18 million contract with Toronto this season. He finished third in AL MVP voting in 2019 with Oakland, when he hit 33 homers with 92 RBIs with an .892 OPS.

The 31-year-old Semien had played most of his career at shortstop before leaving the A's to join the Blue Jays. The 2021 All-Star played at Cal from 2009-11 and was a sixth-round draft pick by the Chicago White Sox in 2011. He previously surpassed fellow Cal great Jeff Kent for the most single-season home runs at the MLB level by a Golden Bear when he hit his 37th of the season on Sept. 7.