Another year, another Yoenis Cespedes laser show for MLB fans.
The 2014 MLB Home Run Derby had a new format, new faces and a much more difficult setting at Target Field, but the Oakland Athletics slugger crushed the competition yet again. Not only did he take home a sweet trophy, but he also claimed the championship belt, as Fox Sports Live notes:
Cespedes might have been the man to stake his claim as the best of the night, but several others also made their marks. Names such as Todd Frazier and Giancarlo Stanton were formally introduced to the Home Run Derby stage, and they put on a huge show.
With the All-Star Game and Derby now officially over, let's take a look back at the results and some of the biggest moments from the night.
|AL Batter||Round 1||Round 2||Round 3|
|Yoenis Cespedes, Athletics||3||10||7|
|Jose Bautista, Blue Jays||10||Bye||4|
|Adam Jones, Orioles||4||3|
|Josh Donaldson, Athletics||3|
|Brian Dozier, Twins||2|
|NL Batter||Round 1||Round 2||Round 3|
|Todd Frazier, Reds||2||6||1|
|Giancarlo Stanton, Marlins||6||Bye||0|
|Troy Tulowitzki, Rockies||4||2|
|Justin Morneau, Rockies||2|
|Yasiel Puig, Dodgers||0|
|Yoenis Cespedes, Athletics||9|
|Todd Frazier, Reds||1|
2014 Home Run Derby Breakdown
Taters, dingers, long balls—whatever you call them, there were plenty to go around Monday night.
While the pressure clearly got to some players—such as Yasiel Puig and Brian Dozier—the Target Field crowd was in for a treat. Some of the most prolific home run hitters in the game—such as Jose Bautista, Stanton and Cespedes—had memorable nights, with the Cuban player ultimately defending his title.
The 28-year-old made history Monday, per Bleacher Report:
Then there was Bautista, who was the clear star in the first round of the competition.
Bautista slugged 10 homers in the opening round, more than Josh Donaldson, Justin Morneau, Dozier, Frazier and Puig combined. That earned the Toronto Blue Jays outfielder a bye, but he came back cold in the third round and didn't advance.
Cespedes noted the new format might have hurt Bautista, per Susan Slusser of MLB.com:
Cespedes says new format did probably affect Stanton and Bautista - got cold and had less time in batting cage while others were hitting.— Susan Slusser (@susanslusser) July 15, 2014
Stanton met a similar fate, losing out to Frazier without a homer in the third round. But he certainly made a dent—or two—in the first round.
Here's a look at Stanton's biggest homer of the night:
That drew quite a reaction from the fans, and even some of the players couldn't contain their excitement. Andrew McCutchen let out an unforgettable scream after the moonshot and even tweeted about it:
Can Cespedes win a third HR Derby?
Needless to say, we might not have seen the last of Stanton in the Derby.
After a night of unforgettable dingers and outstanding reactions, the All-Star Game provided the same excitement for fans. Heading into next season, another crop of players will likely look to top the show the sluggers put on this year.
Though Cespedes has been making waves throughout the season with his arm and his long bombs, the show he puts on at the Home Run Derby is unmatched. If he does return for another year, Cespedes might just hoist the trophy for a third consecutive time, securing his place as the best at the Derby.
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