The Home Run Derby is one of the most wildly entertaining events in sports. Dingers fly off ceilings, bang against warehouses and reach places gravity shouldn't allow. It's a ridiculous show of power and might. So, instead of having it in a plain old baseball stadium, why not stage them
The Home Run Derby is one of the most wildly entertaining events in sports. Dingers fly off ceilings, bang against warehouses and reach places gravity shouldn't allow. It's a ridiculous show of power and might. So, instead of having it in a plain old baseball stadium, why not stage them in some of the wildest locations possible?
Some of baseball's brightest young stars did just that last weekend when they launched balls off a beach in the Bahamas. But let's get even bigger, let's go even crazier -- come with us as we dream up 8 spots to stage the next home run derby.
The Grand Canyon
Just imagine: Baseballs crackling off giant walls of rock, splashing into the Colorado River, sailing through the higher altitudes forever and ever. Two hundred and seventy seven miles of endless American West beauty with the added bonus of the national pastime? There may not be a better combination out there.
Your parents' living room
I don't know what it is, but there's something kind of satisfying about smashing and breaking things you're not supposed to smash and break. Many of those things are probably located in your parents' living room. In fact, you probably smashed and broke some of those things growing up by, well, playing baseball in your parents' living room. So, why don't we just stage a Home Run Derby there? Ask your mom. If she says no, ask your dad. It'll be like a video game came to life.
The Great Wall of China
In order for a ball to be considered a home run in the Derby, it needs to go over the wall. Why not see if some of baseball's biggest sluggers can't hit it over the greatest wall of all?
While the Great Wall of China is the longest structure in the world at 5,500 miles, it can also reach some gigantic heights -- up to 46 feet in some places. That's nearly 10 feet taller than the Green Monster. With all of the sloping hills, it might be tough to find a spot to set up some sort of field, but the internet can help us imagine.
The way that the world's strongest hitters mash home runs, it almost feels like Earth's gravitational forces are powerless. So, why not move the Derby to a place where there's barely any gravity at all? Let the balls fly higher. Let them fly farther. Let's see if someone can hit a home run so hard it re-enters our atmosphere.
Reports say the moon might be open for tourism (aka home run derby competitions) as soon as 2023. Vlad Guerrero Jr. and Pete Alonso will be just entering their primes.
An amusement park
Kind of like the Brooklyn Cyclones ballpark, but instead of next to an amusement park, move it inside of an amusement park. Kids can catch home runs while riding the roller coaster, hitters can launch balls off the Ferris wheel carts, clowns on stilts will run rampant in the outfield -- trying to rob home runs while making balloon animals. It will be beautiful chaos.
Look at all those tourists patiently waiting for home run balls.
The Colosseum has hosted man vs. beast competitions, exotic animal parades and epic sea battles, so, of course, the next logical event is a Home Run Derby. We'd just ask that Russell Crowe be brought out to make a speech once a winner is named.
The top of a skyscraper
Tennis has staged these types of events on top of the Burj al Arab in Dubai. Why can't baseball do the same? Instead of water or snow or hail raining from the sky, it would be baseballs. Every kid's dream. The entire city would be on alert, waiting with their gloves on rooftops or down on the streets and avenues below. There might be some building damage and a few lawsuits, but that's fine, it was all out of a love for the game.
As you can see in the sketch above, giant waves could present a problem. But we're talking about some of the strongest men in the world -- they're not afraid of a little water. Also, who could resist blasting dingers into the most powerful waterfalls on Earth?
Matt Monagan is a writer for MLB.com. In his spare time, he travels and searches Twitter for Wily Mo Peña news.