Ohtani would consider doing Home Run Derby

If asked, Angels slugger would need to discuss participation with medical staff

June 24th, 2019

ST. LOUIS -- Angels designated hitter said Sunday he’d be interested in participating in the T-Mobile Home Run Derby on July 8 at Progressive Field but has yet to be asked about it by Major League Baseball.

Ohtani, who is hitting .276/.341/.493 with nine homers and 30 RBIs in 41 games this year, is known for his legendary batting-practice sessions where he regularly hits moonshots with ease. The reigning American League Rookie of the Year also has 31 homers in 145 career games.

"I haven't heard anything yet," Ohtani said through interpreter Ippei Mizuhara. "But if I am asked, I'd be honored to compete in it."

Ohtani, though, had Tommy John surgery on his right elbow on Oct. 1, so he said he’d need to consult with the club’s medical staff before agreeing to participate. Ohtani, 24, has been hitting without any restrictions this year after returning as the club’s full-time DH in early May, but won’t pitch again until 2020.

"We haven't discussed anything but if they do ask me, we'll have to discuss it internally with the medical staff,” Ohtani said. “Of course, I'd love to play in [the Derby] but it's not only my decision. We have to see what the team says."