The annual home run derby is Monday night at Citi Field in New York. There are no Dodgers in the event, but that is probably for the best as no Dodger has ever made it past the first round.
Mike Piazza participated in the home run derby as a rookie in 1993 at Camden Yards, then again in 1994 at Three Rivers Stadium in Pittsburgh. Both times, Piazza hit zero home runs. In the 18 years since, only nine other players have been shutout, and none more than once.
"It was kind of embarrassing, but what are you going to do," Piazza told Newhan. "You're only as good as your pitcher, and the guy wasn't around the plate. I couldn't develop any rhythm against him. He should be starting for someone."
In 1995 Raul Mondesi was invited to the home run derby in The Ballpark in Arlington, and hit just two home runs in a three-way tie for last place. After three consecutive derbies in the cellar, no Dodger returned to the event until 2005.
Hee-Seop Choi represented Korea in the one year the even took on an international flair, with eight countries represented by eight players. Choi hit five home runs at Comerica Park in Detroit, but like the Dodgers before him it wasn't enough to get out of the first round.
In 2011 Matt Kemp was tied for the National League lead with 22 home runs at the break. But in the home run derby at Chase Field, he made nine outs (every swing that doesn't result in a home run is an out) before hitting his first home run. Kemp hit two before making his 10th and final out.
Kemp returned to the home run derby in 2012 at Kaufman Stadium in Kansas City, this time as captain of the NL team. But again Kemp, who played in just two of the 53 games before the break with two hamstring strains, made nine of his 10 outs before hitting a home run. He would finish with one home run on the night, in seventh place among eight performers.
So that is six appearances by a Dodger in 20 years, no advancement past the first round and 10 total home runs, half of which were hit by a man who was out of baseball at the end of his home run derby season.
On Monday night, there are no Dodgers, but there is still some power that will be on display. Here are the teams:
American League: captain Robinson Cano (21 home runs), Chris Davis (37 HR), Jose Bautista (20 HR), Yoenis Cespedes (15 HR)
National League: captain David Wright (13 HR), Michael Cuddyer (16 HR), Bryce Harper (13 HR in 58 games), Pedro Alvarez (24 HR)
HR derby info
Time: 5 p.m. PT
TV: ESPN, ESPN Deportes
Radio: ESPN Radio
Online: Watch ESPN