Big news broke on Wednesday night – Joc Pederson will partake in the 2019 Home Run Derby in Cleveland. Now, the Dodgers have a contestant in the contest for the sixth straight year. Moreover, arrangements need to be made for Monday; such as who will be throwing to Pederson.
Bill Plunkett of the OC Register has a little nugget of information for us on Twitter, and it’s interesting. Apparently Pederson requested the services of Johnny Washington. Currently, Washington is the hitting coach for the San Diego Padres; formerly a coach for the Dodgers. In fact, he threw to Pederson in the 2015 contest when he came in second.
However, the Padres do not want to lend their coach to Joc Pederson for Monday’s contest.
#Dodgers Joc Pederson said he wanted Johnny Washington to throw to him in HR Derby again. Washington was coach in LAD system. Threw to Joc in 2015 Derby. But Washington is #Padres hitting coach now and "it did not go over well on their side so he will not be pitching to me."
— Bill Plunkett (@billplunkettocr) July 4, 2019
This hints of a little bit of rivalry reborn. Especially the part about ‘it did not go over well’. Of course, one would love to be a fly on the wall when the Padres had that conversation about whether or not to allow Washington to throw to Pederson in a fun exhibition contest.
The topic of who throws to a batter during the Home Run Derby has become an important facet of the contest. You will notice that most participants use a long-time coach, or even a family member. Either way, it’s always someone they have immense comfort with.
It will be interesting to see whether or not this has an effect on Pederson in the contest. Meanwhile, the Padres have lost four straight contests at home to see their record fall to 42-44 on the year. It was likely a poor time to ask for one of their coaches, or anything from them. They weren’t in the best of moods.
What do you think of this move by the Padres? Let us know in the comments below.