Waino makes case to join pitchers' HR Derby

June 15th, 2016

ST. LOUIS -- Adam Wainwright is serious about participating in the 2016 Home Run Derby on July 11 in San Diego. He meant it Sunday afternoon when he tweeted out that he was interested in taking part with Giants starter Madison Bumgarner and Cubs ace Jake Arrieta.

"I'm ready if they call," Wainwright said. "If in fact there was a one-millionth of a chance to get in it, I wanted to let the world know that I wanted to be a part of it."

Wainwright added that the Cardinals would have to approve his participation, and he hasn't gotten an inclination from the team yet. Cardinals manager Mike Matheny wasn't so sure about the idea.

"I don't see a whole lot of good that comes from that," he said. "It's the break, they're going to have fun, but I see somebody falling down swinging really hard. If Waino was in there, he would fall into that category, but he puts on a good show in BP."

Wainwright hit at least five home runs in batting practice Tuesday and has the credentials in games as well. He hit one home run this season and ranks first in RBIs (10) and sixth in average (.261) among pitchers with at least 20 plate appearances.

He's not concerned about any potential injury either.

"There's probably more chance of a pitcher going out and hurting himself pitching in a game than hitting batting practice." Wainwright said. "We do this every day, it's not like they're going out there and asking us to go out and do something we don't ever do. We hit on the field quite a bit."

Wainwright even suggested a bunting contest for cleanup hitters while the pitchers took part in the Home Run Derby. He spoke with Bumgarner about participating during the Cardinals last homestand, when he saw Bumgarner hit a home run into the fourth deck at Busch Stadium during batting practice.

"We're trying to get some people to watch the game that weren't going to watch it before," Wainwright said. "I'm sure every starting pitcher in baseball wants to be a part of it. They're going to think they can win, too, by the way."

He was having dinner with his teammates Sunday night in Pittsburgh when the tweet came across the screen on the television. According to Wainwright, his teammates told him to settle down, but it seems as if he has no intention of doing so.

"Probably well," he said, when asked how he would do in the event. "Not compared to those sluggers who go out and hit 30 or 40 bombs, but among pitchers I would do pretty well."