Baseball Hall of Famer Hank Aaron, the quiet, unassuming baseball slugger who broke Babe Ruth’s supposedly unbreakable record for most home runs in a career, died on Friday, the Atlanta Braves announced. He was 86.

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Aaron joined the Braves management to become one of the few African-Americans in a baseball executive position after retiring as a player in 1976 with 755 career home runs. His cause of death was not immediately reported.


In this Sept. 30, 1969, file photo, a Major League Baseball 100th anniversary patch is shown on the uniform of Atlanta Braves team captain Hank Aaron, left, as he watches from the dugout with manager Luman Harris, during a game against the San Diego Padres, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Joe Holloway Jr., File).

Aaron’s hitting prowess earned him the nickname “Hammerin’ Hank,” and his power was attributed to strong wrists. He was somewhat shy and unassuming and did not have the flair of contemporaries Willie Mays and Mickey Mantle.

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Hank Aaron, right, is presented with a framed certificate for the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette, by Takashi Shinozuka, left, Consul General of Japan in Atlanta, during a ceremony at the consul general’s home, Thursday, Jan. 14, 2016, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David Goldman)


Hank Aaron, right, is presented with a framed certificate for the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette, by Takashi Shinozuka, left, Consul General of Japan in Atlanta, during a ceremony at the consul general’s home, Thursday, Jan. 14, 2016, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David Goldman).


(AP Photo/David Goldman)

Aaron was in the news two weeks ago when he publicly received the first dose of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine with his wife Billye, with the aim of easing doubts about the vaccine.

Baseball Hall of Famer Hank Aaron, right, laughs as he talks with baseball Commissioner Bud Selig, left, at a reception for Aaron, Friday, Feb. 7, 2014, in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)


Baseball Hall of Famer Hank Aaron, right, laughs as he talks with baseball Commissioner Bud Selig, left, at a reception for Aaron, Friday, Feb. 7, 2014, in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass).


AP Photo/Nick Wass

“I feel quite proud of myself for doing something like this,” said Aaron at the time. “It’s just a small thing that can help zillions of people in this country.”

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Aaron was elected to the Hall of Fame on his first ballot in 1982. Both the Braves and Brewers retired his No. 44.

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On April 8, 1974, Aaron hit his 715th home run off Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Al Downing to break Babe Ruth’s long-standing record.

In this Feb. 5, 2016 photo, Hank Aaron is seen attending the screening of the film “The Hammer of Hank Aaron.” (AP Photo/Charles Odum)


In this Feb. 5, 2016 photo, Hank Aaron is seen attending the screening of the film “The Hammer of Hank Aaron.” (AP Photo/Charles Odum).


(AP Photo/Charles Odum)

A 25-time All-Star and the 1957 National League MVP, Aaron also won three Gold Gloves and still holds the all-time records for RBIs (2,297) and total bases (6,856). He ranks second in homers, third in hits (3,771) and fourth in runs scored (2,174).

 







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