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Matt Kemp will take part in All-Star home run derby

July 5, 2011 |  5:29 pm

Fabforum Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp, who (before Tuesday's games) is tied for the National League lead with 22 home runs and has an N.L.-best .611 slugging percentage, is one of eight All-Stars who will compete in the 2011 All-Star home run derby, Major League Baseball announced on Tuesday.

The two most recent champions of the event, David Ortiz of the Boston Red Sox and Prince Fielder of the Milwaukee Brewers, will serve as the captains for the American League and the National League, respectively.  The 2011 State Farm Home Run Derby will take place on Monday at Chase Field in Phoenix at 5 p.m. Pacific and will be televised on ESPN.

Ortiz (.301, 17 HRs, 49 RBIs) and Fielder (.299, 21, 69) each determined the other three participants on their teams and personally extended the invitations as part of a new derby format featuring a team competition between the American League and National League. Though the format to determine the individual champion will remain unchanged, the total number of home runs hit by all players in all rounds will be tabulated for the AL and NL to determine the winning team. Each player will get 10 outs per round, the four players with the highest total of home runs will advance to the second round, and the two players with the highest cumulative number of home runs in the first two rounds will advance to the final round, where first and second round home runs do not carry over for individual scores.

Representing the host National League along with Fielder, the 2009 derby winner in St. Louis, will be his teammate, Brewers second baseman Rickie Weeks (.277, 15, 34); and St. Louis Cardinals outfielder Matt Holliday (.316, 10, 40). Ortiz was the champion of the 2010 derby in Anaheim and has 68 total home runs in four previous derby appearances (2004-06, 2010), which is tied for second-most all time behind Ken Griffey Jr.’s 74 homers. Joining Ortiz will be his teammate, Red Sox first baseman Adrian Gonzalez, who holds the American League’s top marks with a .348 batting average and 75 RBI, along with 16 homers; Toronto Blue Jays outfielder/third baseman Jose Bautista, the Major League leader with both 27 home runs and a .679 slugging percentage; and New York Yankees second baseman Robinson Cano (.294, 14, 54).

In addition to being Ortiz’s fifth derby, this will mark the third for Fielder (2007, 2009) and Holliday (2007, 2010); the second for Gonzalez (2009); and the first for Kemp, Bautista, Cano and Weeks.


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-- Houston Mitchell

Photo: Matt Kemp tosses his bat after hitting one of his 22 home runs this season. Credit: Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press.