The Annual Major League Baseball Home Run will air tonight at 8 E.T. on ESPN. Last year Todd Frazier won the derby in his home ball park in Cincinnati. Now a member of the Chi Sox, Frazier will look to defend his crown in an 8 man bracket in San Diego. Petco Park, home of the Padres, is a rather large stadium that could pose a challenge for these hitters. What should you expect this year at the 2016 Home Run Derby?
You can see by the dimensions of the ballpark that they don’t necessarily favor hitters from either side of the plate. In fact Petco Park is such a large stadium that they decided to move the fences in during the 2013 season. This may be the year where you really target the guys who hit long homers. The derby is set up to where players face of in a single elimination bracket. Let’s take a look at who you should take in the first round.
No. 1 Mark Trumbo (-140) vs. No. 8 Corey Seager (+120):
Trumbo has been on a roll this year for the first place Orioles. The O’s slugger leads the major with 28 homers. Considering his odds are only -140 it seems to be worth the risk. His opponent will be Dodgers rookie Corey Seager. There will be no pressure as the 8th seed to pull off the upset. In a normal setting I would be tempted to take Seager, but considering the event takes place in enormous Petco Park, I’ll go with Trumbo here.
No. 4 Robinson Cano (+140) vs. No. 5 Giancarlo Stanton (-160):
This one seems to good to be true right? Stanton is the lower seed, yet he is favored. I think however the same concept applies here. Normally I would probably take Cano, but the dimensions play a factor here. Go with Stanton he will likely hit the longest homer of the night.
No. 3 Adam Duvall (-110) vs. No. 6 Wil Myers (-110):
Duvall has 23 homers this year for the Reds while Myers has 19 for the Padres. The difference is the Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati is much more hitter friendly. Both are will be appearing in their first derby as they have experienced breakout seasons. I’ll go with Myers here as he will get support from his hometown fans in San Diego.
No. 2 Todd Frazier (-140) vs. No. 7 Carlos Gonzalez (+120):
Frazier is the defending champion but his odds kinda stink here. Frazier has 25 homers on the year as has looked for the longball all season batting a mere .213 in the process. Then again Gonzalez has hit 14 of his 19 homers in hitter friendly Coors field. I would likely pass here but I’ll go with Carlos Gonzalez in an upset.
Below are the list of odds to win the derby outright. Guys like Giancarlo Stanton and Mark Trumbo appear to be safe bets but I worry about them losing steam as the night goes along. Stanton would be my pick in the derby but if I were a betting man I may go with Corey Seager as the underdog. Seager, the shortstop of the Dodgers, knows this park well and could pull off the upset.
Home Run Derby odds, via Bovada:
Giancarlo Stanton: +350
Mark Trumbo: +375
Wil Myers: +550
Todd Frazier: +600
Adam Duvall: +600
Robinson Cano: +800
Carlos Gonzalez: +800
Corey Seager: +900