Major League Baseball today announced the 2017 finalists of its national youth skills competitions - the Scotts MLB Pitch, Hit & Run and the Jr. Home Run Derby. Forty children from around the United States and Canada, between the ages of seven and 14, have advanced from their respective regional
Major League Baseball today announced the 2017 finalists of its national youth skills competitions - the Scotts MLB Pitch, Hit & Run and the Jr. Home Run Derby. Forty children from around the United States and Canada, between the ages of seven and 14, have advanced from their respective regional championships to compete during All-Star Week at Marlins Park, the site of the 2017 MLB All-Star Game Presented by Mastercard.
The second annual Jr. Home Run Derby National Finals will be held at Marlins Park on Saturday, July 8th beginning at 8:30 a.m. (EDT). The skills competition has provided thousands of kids, ages 14 and under, an opportunity to participate in a fun-focused home run hitting contest in more than 1,500 competitions across the United States. The winners of the Jr. Home Run Derby contest will be recognized at the T-Mobile Home Run Derby at Marlins Park on Monday, July 10th.
The Scotts MLB Pitch, Hit & Run National Finals competition is scheduled for Monday, July 10th at 12:30 p.m. (EDT), prior to Gatorade All-Star Workout Day and the T-Mobile Home Run Derby. The list of 24 Finals competitors includes the top three baseball and softball participants from four age divisions (7-8, 9-10, 11-12 and 13-14). Beginning in March, more than 625,000 youth participated in more than 4,500 competitions in either the baseball or softball divisions throughout the United States and Canada. Team championships were hosted at each of the 30 MLB ballparks between the end of May and late June. Scotts MLB Pitch, Hit & Run encourages youth players to develop their skills by competing in pitching, hitting, and running competitions, which begin at the local level and continue through sectional and team championships. Scotts, the Official Lawn Care Company of Major League Baseball, is in its fifth year sponsoring the competition. Eric Hosmer of the Kansas City Royals, Matt Wisler of the Atlanta Braves and six-year MLB veteran Chris Parmelee are all Pitch, Hit & Run alumni.
The finalists of both competitions will attend various All-Star Week activities, including MLB All-Star FanFest at the Miami Beach Convention Center (July 7th-11th), All-Star Sunday featuring the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game and All-Star Legends & Celebrity Softball Game (July 9th) and Gatorade All-Star Workout Day featuring the T-Mobile Home Run Derby (July 10th).
Below is a complete list of finalists for both programs, which were announced tonight LIVE on MLB Network's MLB Tonight:
Jr. Home Run Derby National Finalists
12u Age Division
14u Age Division
Scotts MLB Pitch, Hit & Run SOFTBALL Finalists
Ages 7 & 8
Ages 9 & 10
Ages 11 & 12
Ages 13 & 14
2017 Scotts MLB Pitch, Hit & Run BASEBALL Finalists
Ages 7 & 8
Ages 9 & 10
Ages 11 & 12
Ages 13 & 14
Both competitions are part of the "PLAY BALL" initiative, the sport's largest collective effort to encourage young people to participate in baseball- or softball-related activities, including formal leagues, special events and casual forms of play. PLAY BALL events have become MLB's signature youth engagement activity during the professional and amateur baseball and softball calendar, particularly in connection with key dates from Spring Training, through the MLB Championship Season and into the Postseason and World Series. PLAY BALL aims to highlight the fun and community-focused natures of the game at the Major League, professional, amateur and youth levels. In addition to flagship partnerships with USA Baseball and USA Softball, PLAY BALL is also supported by all 30 MLB Clubs, Minor League Baseball, the U.S. Conference of Mayors, and MLB Corporate Partners Chevrolet, Scotts and Nathan's Famous. In 2016, MLB Network launched Play Ball, a weekly player interview and demonstration show geared toward kids. In the program, MLB stars, including Bryce Harper, Dexter Fowler, Francisco Lindor and Anthony Rizzo, have discussed their experiences reaching the Major Leagues and shared tips in one-on-one demonstrations and conversations with MLB Network analysts. Currently in its second season, Play Ball is available on multiple platforms, including MLB Network, MLB At Bat, MLB.com and Facebook. For more information, please visit PlayBall.org.
The 88th Midsummer Classic will be televised nationally by FOX Sports; in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS; and worldwide by partners in more than 180 countries. FOX Deportes will provide Spanish language coverage in the United States, while ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide exclusive national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB Network, MLB.com and Sirius XM also will provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information about MLB All-Star Week and to purchase tickets, please visit AllStarGame.com and follow @AllStarGame on social media.