Home Run Derby: Part I

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First of all, a public service announcement… I fudged the date of these new entries, so they’re not on top.
I spent the first half of the evening watching the Homerun Derby at home, despite it taking place only 45 minutes away. I entered my name in the lottery to win tickets four times – one for each game I went to this season, minus the Oakland game – but didn’t win. At the Oakland game, I was chivalrous enough to let Anand enter his name, but he didn’t win either. (And believe me, if he had won the pair of tickets, I would have been the one going with him.) My roommate has claimed the television from 10 to 11 to watch some TV show that I’m not remotely interested in. But luckily, I have my subscription to MLB radio to help to follow the Derby — which appears to be about 30 seconds behind ESPN’s TV coverage.
Bobby Abreu dominated the first round, opening the derby with a 30+ minute display that resulted in 24 homeruns. That’s six more homeruns than he has thus far in the regular season and four more than his 2003 season total. Unfortunately for Abreu, the homers don’t carry over and he has no advantage going into the remaining rounds.
The other dominating performance in the opening round was my man, the 1996 Midwest League All Star Game Home Run Derby Champion, David Ortiz, who hit 17. During Ortiz’s turn, Al Michaels was interviewing Jason Varitek. “Do you remember him vaguely as a Minnesota Twin before he came to Boston?” Why, yes, yes I do! Which brings an Erin-Rhode-superstition to mind… way back when, I was a first baseman in Minnesota, before moving to Boston. I then proceeded to attract three Minnesota first basemen to move to Boston with me: David Ortiz, Doug Mientkiewicz, and David McCarty. The question now becomes, will this trend continue now that I’ve moved to Michigan? Is there a Detroit-Boston trade involving Kevin Millar in the works?

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