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Beltran to be participant in Home Run Derby

ST. LOUIS -- Hours after being named an All-Star starter for the fifth time in his career, Carlos Beltran was announced as one of four National League participants in the State Farm Home Run Derby.

Beltran was extended an invitation by the Dodgers' Matt Kemp, who is serving as the NL captain for the event. Outfielders Carlos Gonzalez and Giancarlo Stanton round out the NL group. The American League participants will be announced by their captain, Robinson Cano, on Monday.

The Home Run Derby can be seen on and ESPN at 7 p.m. CT on July 9. The All-Star Game is on FOX at 7 p.m. on July 10.

Though a seven-time All-Star, Beltran is set to be a first-time Derby participant. He was unable to comment on the selection Sunday because of the timing of Major League Baseball's announcement, but Beltran has recently discussed his interest in the showcase event.

"If they approach me, I will think about it," Beltran said last weekend. "I think it would be fun."

Beltran's first-half numbers made him an obvious candidate for Kemp to consider. Beltran has 20 homers this season -- a total that ranks second in the NL -- and is on pace to challenge his career high of 41, set in 2006.

Beltran has 322 homers over his 15-year career and has actually hit more in Kauffman Stadium (61) than in any other Major League ballpark. Beltran was drafted by the Royals and played parts of seven seasons with Kansas City. The most recent of those 61 homers came one week ago, when the Cardinals made an Interleague trip to the other side of the state.

St. Louis Cardinals, Carlos Beltran