Mets rookie Alonso to take swing at HR Derby

Field Level Media

June 29, 2019 at 1:36 am.

New York Mets rookie sensation Pete Alonso said he will take his hacks in this year’s Home Run Derby.

“It’s just something I have always looked forward to,” Alonso said Friday in the New York Post. “I grew up kind of the same person I am now. Kind of just a big power hitter and something like, ‘Man, hopefully I get to do this someday,’ so I am really excited and hopefully I get to be in the game, too.”

The Home Run Derby will be held July 8, a day before the All-Star Game in Cleveland. Pitchers and non-starters for the All-Star Game will be announced Sunday night.

Alonso hit his 28th home run of the season in the fourth inning Friday against the Atlanta Braves, extending his National League record for most home runs by a rookie before the All-Star break. Cody Bellinger of the Los Angeles Dodgers hit 25 in 2017.

Alonso already has set the Mets record for home runs by a rookie in a season, breaking the mark of 26 set in 1983 by Darryl Strawberry in 122 games.

Eight players will compete for a $1 million grand prize at the Home Run Derby. Hometown favorite Carlos Santana of the Indians has accepted an invitation, and Toronto Blue Jays rookie Vladimir Guerrero Jr. reportedly will also participate.

Major League Baseball has raised the total prize money for this year’s contest to $2.5 million. Last year, winner Bryce Harper received $125,000 of the prize pool of $525,000.