The 2012 MLB Home Run Derby takes place at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City on Monday, July 9, as part of Major League Baseball’s All-Star festivities. While many of the game’s best power hitters to skip the event — Josh Hamilton, Adam Dunn, Ryan Braun, Edwin Encarnacion, Curtis Granderson and David Ortiz are among the home run leaders not participating — there should still be plenty of souvenirs launched into the seats and plenty of annoying “Back! Back! Back!” calls from ESPN’s Chris Berman. The New York Yankees’ Robinson Cano won the derby last year, hitting a final-round record 12 homers to beat Adrian Gonzalez of the Boston Red Sox. But really, most of the fun of the derby is watching the kids shagging balls in the outfield fall all over each other.
ESPN airs the derby beginning at 8pm ET. Berman has the play-by-play with analysts John Kruk and Nomar Garciaparra and reporters Buster Olney and Pedro Gomez. Read ESPN’s press release here.
2012 MLB Home Run Derby Participants
Jose Bautista, Toronto
Mark Trumbo, L.A. Angels
Carlos Beltran, St. Louis
Robinson Cano, N.Y. Yankees (AL captain)
Andrew McCutcheon, Pittsburgh
Carlos Gonzalez, Colorado
Prince Fielder, Detroit
Matt Kemp, L.A. Dodgers (NL captain)