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5 Sluggers Who Have a Chance at the Home Run Title

Jeffrey SchmidtCorrespondent IIIJune 19, 2011

5 Sluggers Who Have a Chance at the Home Run Title

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    NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 16:  Curtis Granderson #14 of the New York Yankees in action against the Texas Rangers during their game on June 16, 2011 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York City.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
    Al Bello/Getty Images

    In a year that's been called the year of the pitcher, their seems to be no holding back when it comes to home run hitting. 

    Jose Bautista is picking up where he left off last season, smashing 21 homers in just 63 games and is tied with Curtis Granderson and Mark Teixeira for the league lead. 

    All three are showing no signs of slowing down which is why they could all be over 50 by season's end. In this article, i will break down the top five home run hitters in the league so far this season, and their percentage chance to end up on top at season's end. 

Jose Bautista

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    BALTIMORE, MD - JUNE 05:  Catcher Craig Tatum #15 of the Baltimore Orioles looks on as Jose Bautista #19 of the Toronto Blue Jays connects for a hit at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on June 5, 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland.  (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
    Rob Carr/Getty Images

    2011 Total: 21

    Career High: 54 (2010)

    My 2011 Projection: 51

    Chance of leading league: 85 percent

    It's going to be extremely hard for Bautista to duplicate his numbers from a year ago. The home run king of last season has shown he is one of the elite hitters in all of baseball, and will not stop smashing them out of the park.

    I don't believe that he will reach his 54 of last year, but he will go over the 50 mark. 

Curtis Granderson

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    NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 16:  Curtis Granderson #14 of the New York Yankees in action against the Texas Rangers during their game on June 16, 2011 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York City.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
    Al Bello/Getty Images

    2011 Total: 21

    Career High: 30 (2009)

    My 2011 Projection: 48 

    Chance of leading the league: 75 percent

    Granderson is only three homers shy of last year's total with the Yankees.

    This season, he's hit 21 homers in 69 games compared to 24 in 136 last season. I expect Curtis to dive into a home run drought at some point during the season, however, he will still be in contention when it comes to season's end. 

Mark Teixeira

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    NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 15:  Mark Teixeira #25 of the New York Yankees follows through on a sixth inning two run home run against the Texas Rangers on June 15, 2011 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York City.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
    Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

    2011 Total: 21

    Career High: 43 (2005)

    My 2011 Projection: 50

    Chance of leading the league: 80 percent

    Mark Teixeira is firing on all cylinders.

    The Yankee first baseman has exploded for 21 homers so far this season while getting it done from both sides of the plate. By seasons end, I see him leading the Bombers in home runs as well as being a leading candidate for the American League MVP award. 

Matt Kemp

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    DENVER, CO - JUNE 09:  Matt Kemp #27 of the Los Angeles Dodgers hits a solo homerun off of starting pitcher Juan Nicasio of the Colorado Rockies to deep center field to give the Dodger a 1-0 lead in the second inning at Coors Field on June 9, 2011 in Denv
    Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

    2011 Total: 20

    Career High: 28 (2010)

    My 2011 Projection: 42

    Chance of leading the league: 15 percent

    While Kemp is currently second in total home runs so far this season, I find it hard to believe that he will be at the top of the list at season's end.

    The young Dodgers star is only eight homers away form last years total, and is hitting homers at a rate of one home run for every 12.85 at-bats. 

Prince Fielder

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    BOSTON, MA - JUNE 18:  Prince Fielder #28 of the Milwaukee Brewers shatters his bat as he flies out during the first inning against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park on June 18, 2011 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Darren McCollester/Getty Images)
    Darren McCollester/Getty Images

    2011 Total: 19

    Career High: 50 (2007)

    My 2011 Projection: 55

    Chance of leading the league: 90 percent

    While Prince is currently behind his career-high pace he set in 2007, a contract year always seems to push players to preform at their highest levels.

    During the 2007 campaign, Prince hit a homer every 11.46 at-bats compared to 13.32 this season. With the Brewers being in the playoff race, I expect Prince to lead his team into the playoffs while also leading the league in homers at season's end. 

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