When Max Muncy steps up to the plate Monday night, he will become the ninth Dodgers player to ever compete in the Home-Run Derby. Since the Derby started in 1985, no Dodger has ever won it. Let’s take a look back at every Dodger that has competed in the tournament.
Mike Piazza (1993 & 1994)
Piazza was the first Dodger to compete in the contest, first appearing in 1993. It wasn’t a great showing for the catcher, as he finished the contest with zero homers, the only player failing to hit one in the competition.
Looking to redeem himself, Piazza appeared in the contest again in 1994. Redemption wasn’t on the table, as Piazza hit zero home runs yet again, being the only player yet again to fail to leave the yard.
Raúl Mondesí (1995)
For the third year in a row, the Dodgers had a player in the Derby. For the first time ever, they had a player hit a home run. Mondesí finished the derby with two homers, which was good for last place. But hey, at least he finally got LA on the board!
Hee-seop Choi (2005)
The Dodgers wouldn’t have another player compete in the derby for another decade. In 2005, the MLB switched things up, and had the tournament feature players from different countries. Choi represented the Dodgers, but more importantly represented South Korea. Choi would just miss out on advancing to the next round, hitting five home runs.
Matt Kemp (2011 & 2012)
Who can forget Matt Kemp’s unbelievable 2011 season? Nobody. Who can forget his 2011 Home Run Derby performance? Well, everybody. Kemp continued the streak of Dodger players under-performing in the Derby by finishing with two long-balls, good for last place in the contest.
Just like Piazza, Kemp got a chance to redeem himself in 2012. Just like Piazza, Kemp failed short of his redemption. As if things couldn’t have gotten worse, Kemp finished with one home run on the evening. Surprisingly, everyone seemingly forgets his poor performance thanks to Robinson Cano, the years previous winner who finished with zero homers.
Yasiel Puig (2014)
If this theme is becoming repetitive, I’m sorry. I guess up to this point, the Dodgers just haven’t had any Derby luck. Puig would add-on to the rich history by finishing with zero long balls, the only player failing to hit one in 2014.
Joc Pederson (2015)
AH, YES! THE YEAR THE DROUGHT ENDED! If you think of Dodger players in the Home Run Derby, you’ll immediately think of Joc Pederson’s performance in 2015. Well, at least I hope you will. The first year the Derby switched to the clock format, Pederson almost won the contest. In the first round, he slugged 13 homers, beating Manny Machado by one. In the next round, he competed with his idol Albert Pujols, defeating him 12-11. Ultimately, Joc would lose in the final round to Todd Frazier 15-14. Although Joc lost, it proved to be one of the more exciting Derby’s in the history of the contest.
Final Round (go to 25:47)
Corey Seager (2016)
Though Seager wouldn’t make it out of the first round, he still put on quite the show. He would hit 15 homers, but would fall short to Mark Trumbo, who hit 16 to advance to the next round.
Cody Bellinger (2017)
Bellinger took the MLB by storm in his rookie campaign, becoming one of the deadliest power hitters in the game. He took on Charlie Blackmon in round one, edging him 15-14. In the second round, he would lose to Aaron Judge, 13-12. Judge would go on to win the competition.
Round One: 45:33 | Round Two: 1:26:35
As you can see, it’s only as of recently the Dodgers have begun to compete in the Home Run Derby. Will 2018 be the year a Dodger breaks through and finally wins it? Best of luck, Max Muncy! For a preview of the home run derby, check out this article breaking everything down.