When it comes to the All Star Game, the new home of the New York Mets is a pretty good venue. New stadium, rowdy fans, located in New York City… what’s not to like? Unless, of course, you’re participating in the Home Run Derby. Citi Field was the lowest-ranked home run stadium in baseball in its first years. This year, however, they’ve moved the fences, lowered the height, and home runs have increased to make Citi Field a middle-of-the-pack 18 out of 30 MLB stadiums. You wouldn’t have known that last night. Yoenis Cespedes crushed 17 home runs in the first round en route to a victory in the 2013 Home Run Derby.
Cespedes’s 17 homers in one round was more than the other contestants his in two rounds; the Oakland A’s slugger added 4 more dingers in Round 2. When reaching the finals, Cespedes faced off against the tough-slugging Bryce Harper of the Washington Nationals. In a thrilling final round duel, Cespedes bested Harper by a score of 9 to 8. Cespedes wins a 2014 Chevy Silverado for his troubles, as well as a massive trophy and a bit of vindication after not being chosen as an All Star.
“It’s far different from in Cuba. There might be two people at our games. There’s only one photographer, and this is completely different and foreign to me. But I’m very happy to be here,” said the 27-year-old Cespedes. “This trophy will motivate me so that things continue to go well for me, and I just want to thank the people that believed in me, that thought I could play at this level.”
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