Chris Russo and Stephen A. Smith go berserk over whether Barry Bonds or Aaron Judge is the HR king


‘He cheated… you’re nuts! You’re crazy!’: Chris Russo and Stephen A. Smith clash in fiery debate over whether Barry Bonds or Yankees superstar Aaron Judge is the real all-time home run king

  • Stephen A. Smith & Chris Russo verbally set alight the First Take set Wednesday 
  • The two engaged in a fierce, hilarious debate as to who is the greatest HR hitter 
  • It comes after Aaron Judge made history, hitting his 62nd home run on Tuesday 
  • Judge sits behind Barry Bonds (73), Sammy Sosa (66, 64, 63) and Mark McGwire (65) for the all-time most home runs hit during a single season 
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Stephen A. Smith and Chris Russo engaged in a furious debate following Aaron Judge’s history-making 62nd home run in Texas Tuesday night. 

Judge now holds the American League record for most home runs hit in a single season (62), and will now not add to his tally after being left out of the Yankees’ final regular season game Wednesday.

Following the accomplishment, Russo and Smith debated if Judge was the greatest home run hitter of all-time given the links Barry Bonds, Sammy Sosa and Mark McGwire — all ahead of Judge all-time — have to steroid use. 

‘I don’t give a damn what happened and what he [Barry Bonds] was doing,’ Smith said Wednesday on ESPN’s First Take. ‘He [Bonds] is one of the greatest ever. 

‘As far as I’m concerned, he’s the home run king, and as far as I’m concerned this man smacked 73 home runs in a season. You can call it what you want.’

Russo, naturally, had a difference of opinion, taking umbrage with his colleague’s take. 

‘He cheated! Oh come on, he took the steroids forever, his head expanded!  He hit 24 more home runs than he ever hit in that year. 

Aaron Judge made history, hitting his 62nd home run on Tuesday night vs. the Texas Rangers

Aaron Judge made history, hitting his 62nd home run on Tuesday night vs. the Texas Rangers

Chris Russo exploded into histrionics during Wednesday episode of the ESPN show, First Take

Chris Russo exploded into histrionics during Wednesday episode of the ESPN show, First Take

Chris Russo exploded into histrionics during Wednesday episode of the ESPN show, First Take 

‘You’re nuts! You’re crazy! This man [Judge] is the home run king.’

Of baseball’s holy trinity of home run hitters, only McGwire has admitted to using steroids. Despite their lack of admittance to any wrongdoing, Bonds and Sosa largely have asterisks’ next to their records, 

‘What’s the matter with you? Don’t you care?’ Russo screamed at Smith. ‘Oh c’mon you’re nuts! Because he (Bonds) gave you a hug at the NBA Finals? And now you love Barry Bonds?!’

While appreciative of Judge’s record-setting season, Smith was intent on ensuring Bonds’ career and identity in the sport be recognized. 

Barry Bonds holds the all-time record for the most home runs hit during a baseball season

Barry Bonds holds the all-time record for the most home runs hit during a baseball season

Barry Bonds holds the all-time record for the most home runs hit during a baseball season

Stephen A. Smith and Russo engaged in a fiery discussion surrounding Judge and Bonds

Stephen A. Smith and Russo engaged in a fiery discussion surrounding Judge and Bonds

Stephen A. Smith and Russo engaged in a fiery discussion surrounding Judge and Bonds 

‘You want to celebrate him for the single season home run record? There’s no asterisk next to his name, I’m down for it,’ Smith said. 

‘What I’m not going to allow, is for us to walk around and act like we just summarily dismiss the greatness that Bonds put on display for two decades. I’m not letting it happen. There are too many people in this world that are trying to act like the man never existed. But they reap so many benefits from Barry Bonds.

‘I am not going to let people forget about the greatness of Barry Bonds when ya sat up there and exploited him and profited off him and then you want to sit back and forget it, no!’

Smith admitted that he ‘of course’ believes Bonds used steroids during his 73-home run season in 2001 but failed to anoint Judge as the best home run hitter of all-time. 

Roger Maris Jr. (R) spent time with Judge after he broke his father's American League record

Roger Maris Jr. (R) spent time with Judge after he broke his father's American League record

Roger Maris Jr. (R) spent time with Judge after he broke his father’s American League record

Smith was hellbent on ensuring people do not forget about Bonds' legacy within the sport

Smith was hellbent on ensuring people do not forget about Bonds' legacy within the sport

Smith was hellbent on ensuring people do not forget about Bonds’ legacy within the sport



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