Home Run Derby Showed The Future of MLB
To me, we will always remember Miami’s Home Run Derby. It showcased a glimpse into what the future of baseball could look like and for the first time, casual fans got to see Aaron Judge, Cody Bellinger, Miguel Sano and others put on an absolute show for the crowd. Judge is the big story as this becomes the birthplace of where everyone gets to know his name, and people randomly hope on the bandwagon because of him. Tonight was a major moment for the growth of baseball.
There has been a discussion about ‘Who is the face of baseball’ with Mike Trout and Bryce Harper doing ridiculous things, but the fact is if it’s not a New York Yankee or Boston Red Sox, it might get ignored. Judge is close to being that next guy. He’s a ridiculous athlete doing ridiculous things. Many will have the clickbait headline calling him ‘The Face of baseball.’ Right now, Judge is a must-see attraction when he comes to the ballpark. No one else has that clout. Bellinger should honestly, but I’m not sure how many people watch Los Angeles Dodgers.
Last night’s Home Run Derby felt like one we’ve seen from Ken Griffey Jr. in the past. Junior had a way of coming up majorly in the Derby as he won it three times in 10 years of competing and is the only player to do that in baseball. A part of me hopes Judge goes the Junior route and does this for a decade. Same goes for Giancarlo Stanton. Things will get more fun next year in Washington D.C. when Harper makes his Home Run Derby debut. Harper denies a chance to compete every year, but he will debut his homer swing at his home ballpark.
Judge rules the night and maybe soon, he will rule baseball.