How were the participants selected?
Seems like these days they’ll take anyone who says “yes”. The obvious perennial choices almost always opt out.
I can kinda see why. It’s an extremely physically draining event, especially the deeper you go. That was evidenced in the final. I’m pretty sure Vlad Guerrero Jr. had hit twice as many homers as Pete Alonso did to reach the finals, which left Alonso with more in the tank at the end.
The semifinal between Guerrero and Joc Pederson was pretty damn exciting. As a Dodgers fan, I’m pleased with Joc’s improvement at the plate, but was not a fan of him participating. I believe his rookie season was severely hampered by his participation in the derby that year. Messed his swing up, imo.
But man, triple “overtime” in that duel. 40-39 was the final count, advantage Vlad. I thought Joc was gonna hit maybe 18 and call it a night. Was not at all prepared for how effortless he made it look.
Vlad Jr. hit a total of 91 homers.