Believe it or not, it’s about time to start thinking about the 2014 MLB All-Star Game. The mid-summer classic is just a couple weeks away, which means that arrangements are already being made for the Home Run Derby.
When it comes to skills competitions, it doesn’t get a whole lot better than The Derby. Anyone who’s played the game of baseball has participated in their own version of HRD — and who doesn’t love the long ball?
The 2014 HRD is now unofficially underway as the captains for this year’s event have been named: Jose Bautista and Troy Tulowitzki. Both are currently the top vote-getters for the ASG in their respective leagues, and given their ability to go yard, it only makes sense that they’ll be allowed to pick this year’s derby teams.
The team/league concept isn’t exactly the greatest thing to ever happen to the HRD, but that’s the system in place. It’s at least better than actually having two teams compete against each other like the NBA did in the dunk contest this past February.
MLB has the captains pick the derby teams (after consultation), but in the end it’s basically every man for himself, with only one emerging victorious.
Many believe that Bautista will pick his teammate, Edwin Encarnacion, who’s currently leading MLB with 24 home runs on the season. Nelson Cruz is right behind him with 23.
In the NL, look for Tulo to pick Giancarlo Stanton, who’s crushed an NL-leading 20 HRs so far this season.
At least for another year, it’s AL vs. NL in the Home Run Derby. Kind of.