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Wednesday, November 19, 2003
A-Mays-ing: Willie sets NL home run record
By Larry Schwartz
Special to ESPN.com
May 4, 1966
The Say-Hey Kid is no longer a kid, but he still can belt home runs. Willie Mays, who will be 35 in two days, becomes the National League's all-time home-run leader when he raps No. 512.
The San Francisco Giants centerfielder had been stuck on 511 for eight games, tied with former New York Giants first baseman Mel Ott. Mays is struck out twice by Los Angeles Dodgers left-hander Claude Osteen before belting a solo homer over the right-field fence off Osteen in the fifth inning of the Giants' 6-1 victory.
As Mays circles the bases in his peculiar shuffle, the crowd of 28,220 in Candlestick Park goes wild. "The homer brought bedlam," the San Francisco Chronicle reports, "and the greatest ovation in the long history of baseball on the shores of San Francisco."
Mays will go on to hit another 148 homers to finish with 660.
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