Alonso beats Guerrero to win Home Run Derby
Everybody loves the long ball and there was plenty of that at the Home Run Derby, won by Pete Alonso on Monday.
Matt Chapman, Alonso, Josh Bell, Alex Bregman, Joc Pederson, Ronald Acuna Jr., Carlos Santana and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. all showed their stuff at Progressive Field, but it was the young stars who stole the show.
Bell and Alonso entered the day as favourites, but the former had a first-round exit after hitting 18 compared to Acuna's 25. Alonso survived by knocking out hometown favourite Santana in the first round and made it to the final with a walk off to knock out Acuna.
Alonso ended up winning the contest, beating out Guerrero in the final for $1million and the derby championship.
Let loose. pic.twitter.com/vZfYAAxD02— New York Mets (@Mets) July 9, 2019
Chapman, the top seed who had the unfortunate luck of being pitted against Guerrero, was eliminated in the first round.
Here are three takeaways from the 2019 Home Run Derby:
Guerrero proves he belongs, and then some
Guerrero wanted 30 in the first round. He did not get it, but he was certainly close.
Guerrero ended regulation with 24 home runs – the most of anyone in the first round – but then had a 30-second bonus. It was in that time the 20-year-old third baseman fired off five more homers to set a derby record. He beat Josh Hamilton's previous mark of 28 in a round.
As the youngest player in the derby, many wondered how Guerrero would handle the pressure after he had just eight home runs before the All-Star break.
He proved his first-round feat was not just a one-time thing. He hit 29 again in regulation during the semi-finals against Pederson. When that round finally ended, he had the most home runs (69) in a single derby and still had a round to go.
Guerrero finished with 91 total homers.
The derby had its first ever swing off
Pederson and Guerrero were in the play-offs. Yes, the play-offs. While they both hope to be competing in the postseason after the second half of the season, they were in another high-pressure scenario on Monday.
Pederson and Guerrero were tied throughout the second round and extra time, which forced a swing off for the first time ever. Each batter got three swings, Guerrero picked his cautiously but only had one home run. Pederson also had just one homer in the first swing off.
The two went toe-to-toe again but it was Guerrero who had the edge, beating Pederson 40 to 39.
Carlos Santana couldn't get it done in front of a home crowd.
Santana received by far the biggest cheer during the player introductions. If anyone is used to hitting in the park, it is the Indians infielder.
But, he was eliminated from the derby in the first round after Alonso beat his mark of 13.
Santana, who entered with 19 homers so far this season, struggled on Monday. It took him about a minute to get going and he was able to gain momentum with 90 seconds left. Despite the early elimination, Santana, who is a first-time All-Star, still enjoyed his day
"I'm excited, especially here in Cleveland. I'm going to enjoy it," Santana said.
Santana spent the first seven years of his career in Cleveland and was traded back to the Indians after spending a year with the Philadelphia Phillies.
He is batting .297.