Alex Rodriguez Passes Lou Gehrig With 24th Grand Slam for All-Time MLB Record

Ely SussmanCorrespondent ISeptember 20, 2013

The San Francisco Giants went to their bullpen on Friday night with two outs in the seventh inning, and Alex Rodriguez made them regret it. His opposite-field home run not only broke a 1-1 tie; it set a new MLB record for career grand slams.

This was the 24th bases-clearing blast for the polarizing third baseman. Entering this game, he and Hall of Famer Lou Gehrig were even at 23 apiece.

A-Rod extended his arms on George Kontos' outside fastball and deposited it several rows beyond the right-field wall into a crowd of delirious New York Yankees fans:

Twitter predictably exploded with reaction to the historic feat:

A-Rod passes Lou Gehrig with @MLB-record 24th grand slam. #Yankees lead Giants 5-1 in the 7th!

— New York Yankees (@Yankees) September 21, 2013


— Matt (@Matthew_Narouz) September 21, 2013

A-Rod also moves past Lou Gehrig into 1st place all-time on Grand Slam list - legendary.

— Steve Popper (@StevePopper) September 21, 2013

An A-Bomb from A-Rod! Grand slam to save the Yankees chances at the postseason!!!

— Sergio Gomez (@SigmaCrash13) September 21, 2013

Tim Lincecum started the game for the defending World Series champs and owned Rodriguez through three plate appearances, retiring him each time.

Unfortunately, the right-hander had difficulty throwing strikes to the Yankees lineup. Walking Ichiro Suzuki to load the bases in the seventh elevated his pitch count to 121, and manager Bruce Bochy thought a fresh arm like Kontos was better suited to escape the jam.

A-Rod's clutch round-tripper gave New York a 5-1 lead with only six outs left to record. David Robertson and Mariano Rivera sealed the deal without much drama.

In 40 games played since returning from hip surgery, the 38-year-old is batting a respectable .261/.364/.458 with seven home runs. Skipper Joe Girardi certainly won't mind keeping him at designated hitter if that production continues.

Piggy-backing off that final tweet, the Yankees absolutely needed this series-opening victory.

As Bleacher Report's postseason tracker reveals, they're looking up at a handful of teams in the scramble for an American League wild-card berth. The 2013 regular season ends on Sept. 29.

These heroics only temporarily silenced the boo birds. A-Rod is sure to hear more chirping the very next time he disappoints in a high-pressure situation.