Yoenis Cespedes, 2013 Home Run Derby Champion, Scott Rovak-USA TODAY Sports

Should Yoenis Cespedes Participate in the Home Run Derby?

 

For a number of years, we would see a player put on a show at the Home Run Derby, and then fall flat in the second half of the season. It is most likely because of this, that Billy Beane told A’s beat writer Susan Slusser yesterday, “It wouldn’t upset me if [Cespedes] pulled a Rocky Marciano and ‘retired’ undefeated.” According to Slusser, Beane also said that the choice is ultimately up to Cespedes. This begs the question, should Yoenis Cespedes participate in the Home Run Derby?

Here are the stats for the last 5 Derby winners, starting with their number before the break, followed by their production afterwards.

 
AB
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
Cespedes3071543.225.293
Fielder3211563.299.380
Cano3381557.296.342
Ortiz2511857.263.384
Fielder3082278.315.442
 
AB
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
Cespedes2221137.261.296
Fielder2601545.331.448
Cano2851361.309.358
Ortiz2671445.277.355
Fielder2832463.283.377

According to these stats, the Home Run Derby has not had a big impact on recent Derby winners. In the case of Cespedes, he actually improved his batting average by nearly 40 points.

There are other arguments to be had, however. Will the increased exposure to Cespedes cause his price tag to go too high for the Athletics? Yes, his price tag would go up. On the other hand, the exposure could land him more promotional opportunities, and with that extra cash flow, could actually help the A’s re-sign him if he is serious about staying in Oakland.

Assuming Cespedes performs well again, there would be more focus on the Athletics on a nightly basis. The A’s have the best record in baseball. Couple that with a Home Run Derby darling, and networks will be searching for a ratings boom. Wouldn’t being under the microscope hurt the Athletics? It could, but if this team lets that hinder their great season, then they sure aren’t ready for the playoffs.

Finally, what do you think about Yoenis Cespedes competing in the Home Run Derby?

 

Should Yoenis Cespedes Participate in the Home Run Derby?

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Tags: 2014 All-Star Game Home Run Derby Oakland Athletics

  • Owen W.

    I’m of the mind that people competing in the Home Run Derby is insane on a basic level – why would you take so many extra swings (and fatigued swings) in a competition that doesn’t matter? It’s an unnecessary injury risk, plain and simple. Then again, Cespedes did seem to have so much fun last year, and he lives for the big stage. I’ll accept his desire to participate, but I won’t support it!

  • MFM

    AFTER LAST YEAR, ITS NOT FAIR TO ANY ONE ELSE. LET HIM PLAY IN THE GAME AND GIVING SOME ONE ELSE A CHANCE AT THE HOME RUN.DERBY.