PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – The Pirates’ Pedro Alvarez got to show off on a national stage Monday night. He competed for the first time in the MLB Home Run Derby at New York’s Citi Field.
Alvarez hit six home runs. It was a pretty good debut–better than Detroit’s Prince Fielder, two-time champ Robinson Cano of the Yankees, and recently vilified Mets third baseman David Wright–but not quite enough to reach the second round.
No doubt he was probably saving some of that power for the second half of the season. Alvarez entered the All-Star Break second in the National League with 24 home runs after finishing the 2012 season with 30. He’s on pace to demolish that career high with 42 homers, which would make him, with Ralph Kiner and Willie Stargell, just the third different Pirate to hit at least forty in a single year.
“El Toro’s” longest bomb of the Derby, which measured 461 feet, landed in the right field upper deck. So far, Alvarez has to his credit three dingers of at least 440 feet in regular season play, which had been the most of any Home Run Derby participant this year.
Yoenis Cespedes of Oakland defeated Washington Nationals prodigy Bryce Harper for the title.
In case you missed it, our friends at CBS Sports’ “Eye On Baseball” blog have this chart breaking down the round-by-round performances of Alvarez and the other seven sluggers.