Corey Seager has officially been named a participant in the 2016 MLB Home Run Derby, beginning at 5 p.m. Monday in San Diego.
Only six rookies before this year had been in the Home Run Derby, including Dodger teammate Joc Pederson in 2015. Narrowly missing out as champion to Todd Frazier, Pederson upended the previous Home Run Derby shortcomings of Mike Piazza (1993, 1994), Raul Mondesi (1995), Hee-Seop Choi (2005), Matt Kemp (2011) and Yasiel Puig (2014).
Many have attributed Pederson’s struggles after a hot start last year to the Derby, though his statistical slide began more than a month before the Derby took place. From June 4 last year until the 2015 All-Star Break, Pederson hit .175/.322/.308 with three homers in 146 plate appearances.
Two years ago, Ken Woolums and Daniel R. Braunstein debunked the myth of the Home Run Derby ruining hitters at FiveThirtyEight.com.
Seager is the lowest (No. 8) seed in the Derby. In the first round, Seager will face off against No. 1 seed Mark Trumbo, who hit two homers Wednesday at Dodger Stadium to give him 26 on the season.
Other participants, in order of seeding between Trumbo and Seager, are Frazier, Adam Duvall, Robinson Cano, Giancarlo Stanton, Wil Myers and Carlos Gonzalez.
Here’s more information on Seager, via Doug Miller of MLB.com …
Longest HR of 2016: 440 feet, June 13 at Brewers, off Zach Davies
Hardest-hit HR of 2016: 109.9 mph, May 31 at Cubs, off Trevor Cahill
Average HR distance in 2016: 399 feet
Average exit velocity in 2016: 103.4 mph
And the rules …
• Single-elimination tournament in which the winner of each matchup advances and the loser of each matchup is eliminated.
• If the second batter hits more home runs than the first batter in any matchup, he will be declared the winner and not attempt to hit additional home runs.
• Four minutes per batter for each round. Clock starts with the release of the first pitch. In the first round and semifinals, each batter is entitled to one 45-second “time out.” In the finals, each batter is entitled to two 45-second “time-outs.”
• Thirty seconds of bonus time will be awarded for two home runs that each equal or exceed 440 feet.
• Ties in any round will be broken by a 60-second swing-off with no stoppage of time or additional time added. If a tie remains after the swing-off, batters will engage in successive three-swing swing-offs until there is a winner.