What. A. Night.
Cleveland, OH: There are no other words to describe the electrifying event that was the 2019 Home Run Derby.
New York Mets rookie Pete Alonso showcased his slugging abilities in front of an exhilarated crowd, beating Toronto Blue Jays rookie, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. with 23 home runs in the final round.
“It was just really special. I’m so blessed,” Alonso said after being crowned the Home Run Derby champion, “To do this in front of friends and family and loved ones, it was a dream come true.”
Alonso was booed in the first round by the Cleveland faithful who hoped to see Cleveland Indian first baseman, Carlos Santana keep the trophy in Cleveland. However, Alonso edged out Santana by hitting 14 bombs in the first round compared to Santana’s 13.
Alonso’s passion and adrenaline fueled his performance in each round, edging out his competitors who put up solid numbers themselves.
The highlight of the night that put the baseball world into a frenzy came as Guerrero Jr. and Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder, Joc Pederson put on a slugfest in the semifinals of the derby.
What is being considered one of the best Home Run Derby’s in history was fueled by the triple overtime matinee, which Guerrero Jr. tirelessly but successfully beat Pederson with a total of 40 home runs in the semifinal round.
“There are so many guys that just put on a show, like Joc, he was amazing, Vladdy did such a good job. Everyone. I don’t want to leave anyone out but everyone did such an amazing job.” Alonso said on his fellow derby participants,” Everyone out there put on a show … Being a part of this is surreal.”
It surely was a night for the history books as a total of 312 home runs were launched into the night by the eight participants. 91 of those home runs came from Guerrero Jr., which surpasses the 57 home run total set by Alonso. If Guerrero Jr. would have won, it would have been the first time that a father and son had won the Home Run Derby. His father won in 2007 with 17 home runs.
The mid-season classic festivities have not been disappointing. Cleveland has hosted three events leading to the main event on Tuesday night, starting with the Celebrity Softball Game, Futures All-Star Game and the Home Run Derby. Even though the All-Star Game has yet to be played, Cleveland has hosted an eventful mid-season classic.
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