In a first-time matchup of rookies in the final round of the MLB Home Run Derby, New York Mets first baseman Pete Alonzo beat Toronto Blue Jays third baseman Vladimir Guerrero Jr., 23-22.
But the general consensus is Guerrero — who played in the Midwest League just two years ago — was the real winner of the night.
“Vladito” blasted a record 91 homers during the derby, going deep 29 times in each of the first two rounds. (I’m not sure if he technically hit 40 home runs in the second round thanks to three exciting tiebreakers against Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Joc Pederson, but all those homers definitely count toward his overall total for the event.)
Guerrero gave those of us viewing at home exactly what we hoped he would in the showcase event, and hopefully will continue to do exciting things on the diamond for many years to come.
Guerrero played for the Lansing Lugnuts in 2017, batting .316 with seven homers, 21 doubles, one triple, and six stolen bases in 71 games. He also participated in the Midwest League Home Run Derby that year — and finished second to then-Great Lakes Loons outfielder Carlos Rincon. (Read my post about that here.)