Since we’re now past the halfway point of the MLB season, it’s almost time for the Midsummer Classic and all the festivities that come with it, including the 2023 MLB Home Run Derby. This year’s event is likely to be another entertaining show, if for nothing else we’re seeing a number of people attending the event for the first time, including Mookie Betts. Before we make some bold predictions, let’s take a look at the first round matches:
2023 mlb home run derby first round matchups
- Louis Robert (1) Vs. Adele Ratshman (8)
- Pete Alonso (2) Vs. Julio Rodriguez (7)
- Mookie Betts (3) Vs. Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (6)
- Adolis Garcia (4) Vs. Randy Arrozarena (5)
Here are some bold predictions related to this year’s Derby, including who might take home prestigious award.
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3. Adele Ratshman becomes a star
Keep an eye on Adley Ratshman, the young catcher of the Baltimore Orioles. Although Rutschmann has yet to become a household name, this derby could mark the moment he will catapult into stardom. Despite entering the contest with only 11 home runs, Rutschmann possesses the skill and power needed to make a significant impact. Rutschmann has been part of a very young and exciting Orioles team this year that currently sits in second place in the highly competitive AL East division. It will be a welcome sight to see the 25-year-old on such a grand stage, as he is one of the best young stars in the game. Although he may be considered the underdog in this year’s home run derby, don’t underestimate his ability to surprise and capture the spotlight. He will be matched up against top-seeded outfielder Louis Roberts Jr. of the Chicago White Sox. in the first round, and if it went Rutschmann’s way, he would land the final upset and take the first round away from him.
2. Pete Alonso Becomes Home Run Derby King
On the other end of the spectrum, we have Pete Alonso, winner of two of the last three Home Run Derbys. Alonso holds the record for most homers hit in a single round (35), while also holding the record for most home runs by a single player in a combined performance, with 193. Alonso’s sustained power and derby familiarity make him clear favorite With odds of +300, according to FanDuel. While this isn’t a bold prediction in itself, the title he could take after that is.
If Alonso wins a third Home Run Derby, he will be right next to Ken Griffey Jr., the only other player to win three titles. However, in the current format, Alonso would be the home run derby king, and perhaps considered the greatest player to ever play in the event. As many have said – Pete Alonso was put on this earth to hit home runs. Hail the king
1. Fewer homers reach 460+?
This year’s All-Star celebration will take place at T-Mobile Park in Seattle, Washington, home of the Seattle Mariners. Often considered one of the league’s better modern stadiums, those who enter the batter’s box might not think so. Statcast rates it as one of least friendly park in home runs in the league. Overall, only 92 home runs have been hit at T-Mobile Park this season, according to OnlyHomers.com. He ranks 21st in the league.
In its nearly 24-year history, there have been only six home runs hit over 460 feet high at T-Mobile Park. The Mariners’ Jared Kelenick’s 482-foot home run in April is the longest ever hit at the park in the Statcast era. That being said, we may see a decrease in the number of balls longer than 460 feet. So, however far these bombs may go… they may not be going that far.