Everybody loves a home run. The Home Run Derby has provided some fantastic ones over the years. The 2012 teams have been announced and will face off on July 9.
The NL Home Run Derby team is captained by the Dodgers Matt Kemp. He announced his team on Sunday night, which includes first time participant Giancarlo Stanton, Carlos Beltran and Carlos Gonzalez. Kemp has been out of the game since May 30 with a strained left hamstring but he intends to participate in the Derby. He has 12 homers on the year. Beltran is in second place in the NL with 20 homers on the year. Stanton has 19 and Gonzalez has 17. Kemp had wanted to have teammate Andre Ethier on the Derby team but a strain of his left oblique prevented that selection.
On Monday night, the AL captain Robinson Cano selected his team selecting Mark Trumbo, Prince Fielder and Jose Bautista. The AL is led by Bautista who has 26 homers on the year. Fielder has 12 homers this season. Trumbo has 20 and Cano has 20 as well. Texas Rangers slugger Josh Hamilton declined to participate this year citing concentration on the post season. David Ortiz also decided not to participate and just be on the sidelines cheering them on.
Josh Hamilton set the bar very high for all Home Run Derby’s that follow including this one. It will be interesting to see if anyone can come close to his record. Even if they don’t, the Derby is always great fun to watch as everyone, not just chicks, dig the long ball.