Baseball's hitters got a head start on the Home Run Derby.
A record 62 home runs were hit in the major leagues Tuesday night, breaking the mark of 57 set two years ago.
"The ball must have been traveling well tonight," said Baltimore's Jay Gibbons, who hit the record-breaker against Anaheim's Scott Schoeneweis.
Six days before the game's biggest sluggers come to Milwaukee for the All-Star game and Home Run Derby, it seemed as if almost everyone was going deep.
Fifty-three players homered on a night in which there were 16 games. There was one doubleheader -- Toronto at Boston.
Detroit's George Lombard homered for the first time since 1998 and Sammy Sosa hit his 28th of the season to help break the record set on April 7, 2000.
"That's kind of a weird stat to have," Gibbons said. "I didn't even know they kept that."
The hitters didn't stop after Gibbons.
Los Angeles' Eric Karros connected against Arizona's Greg Swindell, Oakland's Olmedo Saenz hit a game-winning two-run shot against Minnesota's Eddie Guardado, and Kansas City's Mike Sweeney and Raul Ibanez homered off Seattle's Kazuhiro Sasaki.
Ibanez's homer was his second of the day, making him the record ninth player to hit at least two in a game Tuesday. The previous mark was eight, on May 19, 1999.
"I guess it's a bigger deal to the fans and stuff," Ibanez said. "We're caught up playing the game and trying to win."
There were 30 homers hit in the American League, topped by a record-tying 12 in Chicago's 17-9 victory over Detroit. The White Sox and Tigers originally set the major league record for homers in a game with 12 on May 28, 1995 in Detroit.
"It was like Colorado out there," said the Tigers' Dmitri Young, who homered twice. "Everybody put it way in the air."
They were going deep in the thin air of Colorado, too. The Giants and Rockies combined for 10 of the 32 homers in the NL in San Francisco's 18-5 win at Coors Field.
San Francisco's Damon Minor, Tsuyoshi Shinjo and Reggie Sanders each homered twice as the Giants became the 16th team to have three players with multiple homers in a game. Barry Bonds, who set the major league record with 73 last season, didn't hit any.
"It's just a great relief to get one of these games," Minor said. "Everyone was hitting the ball and it seems like everyone was hitting it hard."
Magglio Ordonez and Sandy Alomar of the Chicago White Sox, and Houston's Lance Berkman also homered twice Tuesday.
Berkman has 27 homers on the year, one behind Sosa's major league-leading total.
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