Aaron Judge is one cool dude. Kansas City Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas, Marlins first baseman Justin Bour and Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez were each listed at 15-1 as of Monday morning.
While most All-Star Skills competitions have grown stale for the average sports fan, the revisions baseball made to the Home Run Derby two years ago have refreshed the event. "This means the 6'7" Judge is a true power hitter. That's more been a myth than an actual trend, but it's still interesting to see that Aaron Judge and Cody Bellinger are competing. Marlins first baseman Justin Bour put on a show, hitting 22 homers in the first round as the 7th seed.
This is the first time that I have ever been excited for the Home Run Derby. And with Judge tipping the scales more than any Home Run Derby victor in history, he might be the one to bring home the win.
But one of his homers was ruled to have stayed in play. Judge has created an incredible buzz around the majors and that should continue in his initial MLB Home Run Derby appearance.
Stanton, the defending Derby champ, and his predecessor, Todd Frazier, validated the tweaked Derby format with truly memorable performances at Petco Park and Great American Ball Park, respectively. Sanchez surprised everyone by beating hometown guy Giancarlo Stanton.
Conspiracy theories have circulated for years about the supposedly "juiced" baseballs that travel so far in the All-Star Home Run Derby, but even in a regular season during which the balls have come into question those suspicions were rendered moot in the very first round Monday night. Yoenis Cespedes (2013-14) and Ken Griffey (1998-99) are the only players to repeat. Sanchez hit 20 home runs in 51 games last season, good for No. 6 on the all-time Yankees rookie list. He also hit the roof near a light bank in left, 160 feet above the field. As you could see, plenty of fans took him up on the offer.
What channel is the Home Run Derby on?: This year, ESPN will be airing the derby tournament. That mark fell a foot short of his longest in the 2016 Derby. In each bracket, the higher seed hits second.
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