What Makes MLB Home Run Derby A Fan-Favorite Pastime?

By Robert Lin
Yoenis Cespedes
Robert Deutsch-USA Today Sports

The 2013 MLB Home Run Derby has come to an end with Oakland Athletics outfielder Yoenis Cespedes  winning the event. Baseball fans packed Citi Field with gloves ready to catch fly balls from their favorite players. Cespedes gave the fans what they wanted, cracking 17 home runs in the first round alone.

It’s feats like this that makes the Home Run Derby the most exciting feature of the All-Star Game festivities.

Baseball fans young and old all adore the Derby because it is the perfect time to watch their favorite players and to partake in a long tradition: catch home run balls. The game is easy to understand. In the Derby, an attempt is either a home run or an out. There are no strikes, balls, foul balls — you get the point.

Another thing that makes the Derby great is that the spectators are participants themselves. Fans are not sitting out in the heat for three hours to watch a nine-inning game. They’re picking their spots with their gloves ready to catch any ball that might fly in their direction. Fans also have more chances to catch a fly ball compared to a normal baseball game.

Watching how far players can hit a ball is another reason the Derby is so popular. Cespedes’ winning hit sailed 455 feet to the center field. Many of his first round shots hit the upper deck in left. The last great thing about the Derby are the bragging rights. How many balls can you catch in the event?

All these aspects of the Derby make it a beloved pastime now and for future generations.


Robert Lin is a writer for Rantsports.com.  Follow him on Twitter @rlin2k or add him to your network on Google.

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