Some of the best power hitters in baseball stepped to the plate on Progressive Field for the MLB Home Run Derby 2019 on Monday night.
They included several young stars such as the Atlanta Braves’ Ronald Acuna Jr. New York Mets’ Pete Alonso, and the Toronto Blue Jays’ Vladimir Guerrero Jr., among others.
Of those players, the Jays’ rookie put on quite a show. So how many home runs did Vladimir Guerrero Jr. hit in the Home Run Derby?
Vladimir Guerrero’s impressive Home Run Derby
For the current MLB season, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. has hit only eight home runs. Nonetheless, he’s a rookie who has the power at the plate to crush the ball as needed.
He showed that ability during his debut at the MLB Home Run Derby.
The opening round was just a warm-up for what was coming as Guerrero Jr smashed 29 longballs out of the Cleveland Indians’ stadium.
That was good to put him into the semifinals round. It was also a single-round record for home runs in a Derby.
Through the opening round of the Home Run Derby tonight, we have seen record breaking 149 1st-Round HR (previous record 128 in 2017) and 2 of the 3 highest single-round HR totals in derby history: Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (29) and Ronald Acuña Jr. (25) pic.twitter.com/Bg5m7mPYZn
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) July 9, 2019
Not bad for the youngster as he looked to follow in his famous father’s footsteps. Vladimir Guerrero Sr. was a Home Run Derby winner back in 2007.
Ironically, he won that contest with just 17 total home runs, due to a difference in the format. He defeated a Toronto Blue Jays player, Alex Rios, who recorded 19 total, but just two in the final round.
Here’s a look at just part of Vladimiar Guerrero Jr’s epic night at Progressive Field.
— Toronto Blue Jays (@BlueJays) July 9, 2019
However, he’d eclipse that total in the second round as he and the Los Angeles Dodgers’ Joc Pederson went head-to-head in quite the showdown. The two players needed multiple tiebreakers in order to decide who would go to the final round.
Ultimately, Guerrero had a total of 40 home runs after the tiebreakers, which was good enough to push him through the finals.
Pederson finished with 39, which gave him the second-most home runs in a single round of a Derby.
Guerrero’s home run total for 2019 contest
When all was said and done, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. ended his evening with a total of 91 home runs. That’s the most total HRs hit for a Home Run Derby.
It’s also a whopping 30 more than previous record-setter Giancarlo Stanton who had 61 in the 2016 contest.
Im sorry but Vlad Guerrero Jr. Is the real Home Run Derby Champ…
91 >37 pic.twitter.com/f81ptbCzPk
— Jena Garcia (@VidaVivaDiva) July 9, 2019
As mentioned by the commentary team, Vlad’s total of 91 is more than four of the current MLB teams have this season.
In all fairness, Vlad hit his HRs during the equivalent of a fun batting practice-style contest, but the amount of skill, strength, and stamina needed to accomplish the feat is impressive.
While he had the most home runs of all competitors in the contest, he would ultimately gas out in the finals. The New York Mets’ Pete Alonso managed to hit 23 home runs, just one more than Vlad’s 22, in the finals.
That made Alonso the 2019 Home Run Derby winner.
Still, based on what the young star Vladimir Guerrero Jr. showed in this outing, he’s got a bright future ahead of him in the league!