Globe iconLogin iconRecap iconSearch iconTickets icon
news

Dodgers News

Joc ready to take his hacks in Home Run Derby

Dodgers slugger to face Astros' Bregman in first round
@kengurnick
July 7, 2019

LOS ANGELES -- Dodgers slugger Joc Pederson will be one of the eight participants in Monday’s T-Mobile Home Run Derby at Cleveland’s Progressive Field. Pederson finished second in the 2015 edition. • Play HR Derby Bracket Challenge for chance to win $250,000 “The two highlights of my career were being

LOS ANGELES -- Dodgers slugger Joc Pederson will be one of the eight participants in Monday’s T-Mobile Home Run Derby at Cleveland’s Progressive Field. Pederson finished second in the 2015 edition.

Play HR Derby Bracket Challenge for chance to win $250,000

“The two highlights of my career were being in the Home run Derby in 2015 and playing in the World Series,” said Pederson. “Who knows when another opportunity will come to participate in that. Seemed like a no-brainer.”

T-Mobile Home Run Derby: Monday July 8, 8 p.m. ET on ESPN

Pederson joins Alex Bregman, Matt Chapman, Pete Alonso, Josh Bell, Ronald Acuña Jr., Carlos Santana and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Chapman was added to the field on Sunday in place of Christian Yelich, who will miss the event with a back injury.

Pederson is seeded fifth and will face off with fourth-seeded Bregman in Round 1.

5 reasons to root for Pederson in Derby

Pederson selected Dodgers third-base coach Dino Ebel to be his pitcher. Ebel had already been invited to participate in the All-Star Game as a member of manager Dave Roberts’ coaching staff, and Ebel has a backstory to go with it.

Ebel was the Home Run Derby pitcher for Vladimir Guerrero and Albert Pujols when he coached the Angels. Each time the player invited him to stay for the game as a guest. Each time Ebel declined.

“I told them I had promised myself I wasn’t going to an All-Star Game until I went in uniform,” Ebel said. “When they held the game in Anaheim [in 2010], [Angels owner] Arte Moreno invited me to the game. But, uh-uh. The only way I was going to an All-Star Game was in uniform, and that’s what I’m doing this year. I couldn’t be happier.”

All-Star Game presented by Mastercard: Tuesday July 9, 7:30 p.m. ET on FOX

Pederson has 20 home runs, a number he has reached in four of his five Major League seasons, with a .521 slugging percentage. All 20 of his home runs have come against right-handed pitching, 19 while batting in the leadoff spot and 15 at Dodger Stadium. Seventeen were hit by the end of May.

In the 2015 event, Pederson was edged in the final by Todd Frazier, 15-14, at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati. Pederson, who was also an All-Star in '15, advanced to the final by beating future teammate Manny Machado and Albert Pujols.

Pederson will be the 13th Dodger to participate in a Home Run Derby and will give the Dodgers a participant in each of the last six seasons. He will join Mike Piazza (1993-94) and Matt Kemp (2011-2012) as the only Dodgers to participate in the contest twice.

Ken Gurnick has covered the Dodgers for MLB.com since 2001.