Aiming for one of the most famed records in sports history, a pair of very different baseball players hit home runs at an impressive rate. Roger Maris, a reserved sort, is much less popular than his hard-partying New York Yankee teammate Mickey Mantle, the player who many observers think will be the one to challenge Babe Ruth's record of 60 home runs in one season. But in the summer of 1961, Maris surges ahead of Mantle, making a run at Ruth's mark.
Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris. Why did America have room in its heart for only one hero?
Did You Know?
Contrary to the film's suggestion (and the widely held public impression), Commissioner Ford Frick
never said that Roger Maris
's home run mark would carry an asterisk because it was set in 162 games, while Babe Ruth
's record was set in 154 games. As Frick said on 21 September, 10 days before Maris hit his 61st homer: "As for that star or asterisk business, I don't know how that cropped up or was attributed to me, because I never said it." Frick said the record books would contain two entries, with the same status. More importantly, he said he took this position because he was convinced baseball would revert back to a 154-game schedule within a few years, and allowing the new records to stand alone would make them unbreakable in a shorter schedule. Most people forget that only the American League, which had expanded to 10 teams, played 162 games in 1961. The National League, which still only had eight teams, played 154 games that year. See more
There is a scene where Roger Maris signs an 'X' on a baseball for a fan. Although this did actually happen, it wasn't until 1962. See more
Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. Welcome to Yankee Stadium.
After the first set of credits, a father tells his son "That's Mickey Mantle and that's a homerun". The film is then dedicated to director Billy Crystal's father who introduced him to baseball as a child. See more
Featured in Tell Them Who You Are
Hello, Mary Lou (Goodbye Heart)
Written by Gene Pitney
and Cayet Mangiaracina
Performed by Ricky Nelson
Courtesy of Capitol Records
Under License From EMI-Capitol Music Special Markets See more