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MLB News & Moments You Should Know – 7/19

Dingers, yicketies, and moonshots galore.

Stay updated on everything baseball with our morning MLB News & Moments articles. We’ve got you covered to keep you in the know.

 

 

Today’s Headlines

 

Shuffle On: Soto Tops Rodríguez for Derby Crown

From the moment Julio Rodríguez opened the 2022 Home Run Derby with 32 massive bombs, the event was destined to be a smashing success. Rodríguez’s electric rookie debut was arguably the story of the night, as he hit a Mariners’ franchise-record 63 homers in the first two rounds, knocking off two-time defending champ Pete Alonso in the process. It was reminiscent of another fresh-faced slugger from Seattle who put on a show two decades ago:

Meanwhile on the other side of the bracket, Albert Pujols bested top seed Kyle Schwarber in overtime… and Juan Soto put away Jose Ramirez with style:

In the end, it was Soto and Rodríguez squaring off in a dramatic matchup of young stars in the final. Soto prevailed 20-19, becoming the second-youngest ever to win it (by exactly one day) — and receive his laurels from Bad Bunny himself.

The trophy will look real nice on the ol’ mantle. Now the only question is, in what city will that mantle be found?

 

All-Star Game Lineups, SPs Revealed

Earlier on Monday, we got our first glimpse at how the American and National Leagues will be lining up for the main event this evening. The A.L. side features Shohei Ohtani at the top, followed by a whole bunch of other men who excel at hitting baseballs. Isn’t it fun how that works out?

Taking the mound for Dusty Baker’s squad is MLB ERA leader, Shane McClanahan!

On the other side of the Dodger Stadium diamond, the N.L. lineup features Ronald Acuña Jr. at the top, with a special treat in the middle: the Contreras brothers, Willson and William, hitting back-to-back.

In a minor surprise, the N.L. starter is none other than Clayton Kershaw. Sandy Alcantara was obviously the candidate with the best resume, but Brian Snitker opted give the nod to the home team’s veteran star instead. PSA: hide your kids when this man takes the mound tonight…

 

Derby Part Deux?

If you didn’t get enough of the dingers last night, fear not: we may get a repeat event in L.A. tonight. MLB announced on Monday that this year’s All-Star Game could feature a derby-style finish, should the event remain tied after nine:

Color me intrigued. Per reports, the tentative plan for the A.L. would be to nominate Rodríguez, Kyle Tucker and Ty France, while the N.L. would set forth Schwarber, Alonso and Acuña. But I mean, can you really tell Soto no if he asks?

 

Oh, Captain, my Captain!

Finally, the late-night crowd on Monday caught the first installment of this year’s much-anticipated Derek Jeter docuseries, “The Captain,” airing on ESPN. The Yankee legend let everyone know exactly what kind of wholesome content to expect.

The show promises a thrilling feature for fans who grew up with Jeter, and a fun ride down memory lane for the rest of us:

If you missed it and forgot to set your DVR (do people still have DVRs?), the episode is available for streaming on ESPN+.

 

Best Moments from Monday

 

Junior with the Shot

The aforementioned derby champ Ken Griffey Jr. was in attendance once again to watch Rodríguez’s show, and you better believe he came prepared to document it. With memes like this, who needs games?

 

Just Kids with Sticks

During the derby intros, the cameras caught Rodríguez and Acuña enjoying the moment on-stage:

Ironically, Acuña wound up doing a different dance a few moments later when the Soto’s fiery intro came a little too close:

 

Albert’s House

Before he went out and put the finishing touch on a winning round, the L.A. crowd and both dugouts took a moment to appreciate Pujols and all he’s done for the game:

 

The Re-Pete Mentality

During Acuña’s swings, Alonso took the time to center himself — visualizing, one assumes, that coveted three-peat. Folks, this is the look of a man on a mission:

He even went so far as to sling a few bars in the weight room before stepping onto the field:

The intense, ah, preparation got him past Acuña, but no further. Maybe next year, hit the cages instead?

 

Take-Your-Boy-to-Work Day in L.A.

Lastly, it’s a known fact that we take any excuse to post Charlie Freeman content around here. With this year’s festivities taking place in Freddie’s new home city, it was only a matter of time before the kid made an appearance. The breakout star of the 2021 All-Star red carpet showed off his arm last night while playing catch with dad:

 

Injuries

 

  • Chris Sale underwent surgery to repair his fractured finger on Monday, per reports. The Red Sox are still optimistic he’ll pitch again this season.
  • Stephen Strasburg, however, will not.
  • Mike Trout was placed on the 10-day IL with ribcage inflammation, the Angels announced. He should be back shortly after the break, if all goes well (then again, it’s the Angels).

 

Articles You Should Read

 

MLB Trades That Need To Happen Before The Trade Deadline – Justin Dunbar, Pitcher List

The Past, Present, and Future of the Home Run Derby – Michael Baumann, The Ringer

 

Fantasy Baseball Coverage

 

Starting Pitcher Roundup

Hitter Performances

Reliever Ranks

Starting Pitcher Streamers

 

Featured image by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)

Wynn McDonald

Born a Kentuckian, much like Dan Uggla. Braves fan by choice, unlike Dan Uggla. I enjoy long walks on the Brandon Beachy. @twynstagram

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