Alex Rodriguez turns 41 years old Wednesday. The six career home runs he has hit on his birthday are the most in major league history.
So far, Rodriguez has homered on his 21st, 26th, 27th, 29th and 40th birthdays (multiple home runs on July 27, 2002), but there has not been much to celebrate about Rodriguez’s play since he turned 40.
Rodriguez has a .207 batting average and a .670 OPS since homering on his birthday last season. Out of 176 players with at least 400 at-bats since the start of play on July 28, 2015, Rodriguez ranks 175th in batting average and 156th in OPS.
Rodriguez’s production started to decline immediately after he turned 40. He went 18 straight games without hitting a home run and slugged .269 over that stretch.
Through play on his birthday last season, Rodriguez ranked 12th in slugging percentage (.543), eighth in OPS (.916) and tied with teammate Mark Teixeira and Josh Donaldson of the Toronto Blue Jays for ninth in the majors in home runs (24).
Rodriguez is tied for 108th and Teixeira is tied for 126th in home runs since then.
Notable birthday home runs
The good news for the New York Yankees is Rodriguez usually plays well on his birthday. To go with the six birthday home runs, Rodriguez has a .327 batting average in 14 games on July 27. His teams are 5-0 when he homers on his birthday.
Here are some of Rodriguez's most notable birthday moments.
2002: To celebrate his 27th birthday, Rodriguez launched two homers and drove in five runs for the Texas Rangers, including a walk-off grand slam in the 10th inning of a 10-6 victory over the Oakland Athletics. "If he's not the best player in baseball, it's a very short list,” manager Jerry Narron said at the time.
2015: The Yankees' designated hitter celebrated turning 40 by hitting a solo home run against the Rangers.