Philadelphia Phillies outfielder Domonic Brown was curiously left off the group to represent the National League in the Home Run Derby. This is a travesty to the annual competition as Brown is second in the NL in home runs and has arguably been the best power hitter in his league for the majority of the season.
The way the Home Run derby participants are selected is frankly a goofy format. There is a captain chosen each season and he gets to pick the participants in the exhibition. This year, the NL representative is David Wright of the New York Mets, and he chose a buddy of his in Carlos Gonzalez and some other players who seemed less deserving than Brown to be in the Derby.
Could this have something to do with the rivarly between the Phillies and Mets? It is a distinct possibility. I believe the derby participants should be chosen in a different measure, such as by fan voting, so that favoritism or a buddy system isn’t formed in these competitions.
Brown has been arguably the best young hitter in the game this season and his talents should be on display in Citi Field on Monday Night. Instead, fans will be robbed of witnessing him showcasing his talent because of the captain system in place for the Home Run Derby.
This could be a blessing in disguise. Maybe it motivates Brown to prove himself in an even grander fashion and shut some of the doubters up. The Home Run Derby is also infamous for affecting certain sluggers’ swings, and that is something Brown does not need after having his short, compact stroke perfected with the help of Phillies hitting coach Wally Joyner.
Brown can still show his worth in the All-Star Game. Hopefully, he will use this derby snub as fuel to trigger a second half as impressive as his first on the way to the Phillies fighting for a playoff berth.