Tag Archives: Pope Francis

The deadball era, the steroids era, and the Benedict XVI era

Pope Benedictus XVI
Pope Benedictus XVI. (Courtesy of Wikipedia.)

Dan Connolly at The Baltimore Sun posted a list of home run kings during each period of papal reign:

Baseball historian/statistician Bill Arnold passed this tidbit my way. And I had to share it with you. It combines Catholicism and baseball. And includes Baltimore’s greatest son.

In honor of the Roman Catholic Church naming Francis I its new pope Wednesday, Arnold put together a list of all-time, home-run leaders under each of the 11 popes since Major League Baseball was officially formed.

I’m not kidding.

Baltimore-born Babe Ruth is the only player to have sole possession of homer crowns under two popes (Hank Aaron had to share one). And, appropriately, the last player to win the “Pope Homer Crown” was a Cardinal and then an Angel: Albert Pujols (during Benedict XVI’s reign.)

By the way, Arnold points out that, numbers-wise, it’s easier to be selected to be pope (66 percent of the electorate) than a baseball Hall of Famer (75 percent).

(Follow the link above to see the full list.)

Here’s to the Pope Francis era being a less scandalous one for both Major League Baseball and the Catholic Church.

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