The 2011 Home Run Derby kicked off with the American League captain, David Ortiz, pulling a late line up change. He put Adrian Gonzalez up first. It looked like a good move when the current batting average leader opened things up with nine bombs which would stand up as the most for the first round.
Robinson Cano represented infielders well with some of the longest balls including a 472 foot blast to right center field that hit off the Miller Light sign. Cano finished with eight home runs in the first round.
Matt Holliday, Prince Fielder, and David Ortiz all tied with five home runs which prompted a five-swing tie-breaker to determine the last two spots. Fielder and Ortiz advanced with an impressive display of nine home runs in 10 swings.
The Arizona crowd was all over Rickie Weeks who the Diamondbacks' fans felt "took" the spot that should have gone to Justin Upton. Chants of "We Want Upton" rained down during Weeks turn at the plate and he answered with just three home runs.
Joey "Bats" Bautsita leads the league in home runs (31) but his performance showed that the Derby is a different thing from game action. Bautista was eliminated with just four home runs in the first round. He can now return to the Toronto Blue Jays where he will face major league pitching that he finds more to his liking.
Here's the full results for the first round of the 2011 Home Run Derby:
- Adrian Gonzalez - 9
- Matt Holliday - 5 (2 in tie-break)
- Robinson Cano - 8
- Rickie Weeks - 3
- Jose Bautista - 4
- Matt Kemp - 2
- David Ortiz - 5 (4 in tie-break)
- Prince Fielder - 5 (5 in tie-break)
Gonzalez, Cano, Ortiz, and Fielder now advance to the second round.