Home Run Derby notes: Dozier was nervous in Derby debut

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American League, Brian Dozier MIN 2 homeruns

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Brian Dozier figured his brother, Clay, would be nervous throwing to him at the Home Run Derby.

What he didn’t anticipate was that he himself would be so nervous as he stepped into the Derby spotlight for the first time.

Not hitting inside a batting cage will feel strange, he was told. Having a catcher there will not seem right, he was warned.

He tried to be prepared but found it difficult to get comfortable. He ended up with just two home runs, crashing out in the first round.

“I ain’t going to lie to you,” Dozier said. “It’s probably the most nervous I’ve been in a very long time. It probably tops my debut.”

AL captain Jose Bautista picked Dozier to bat first, figuring the Target Field crowd would get locked in early. Their cheers of “Dozier! Dozier!” moved the Twins second baseman but were unable to lift more balls into the seats.

Dozier said his brother did a fine job pitching to him; he just couldn’t get going. But he said it was an experience he’ll never forget.

“The crowd was electric,” he said. “They started chanting ‘Dozier.’ That’s probably one of the highlight moments of my career, to be honest with you. Some chills came over my body.”

 

Trout opts to watch

The Home Run Derby isn’t for everybody. Sometimes hitters don’t want to do it, and sometimes their teams aren’t crazy about them doing it.

Angels center fielder Mike Trout might be the sport’s biggest current superstar, but he acknowledged Monday that his manager, Mike Scioscia, was against the idea of Trout being in the Derby.

“Sosh told me his opinion of it, but other than that, it’s my choice,” Trout said. “He was leaning for me not to do it. I’m sure if I would have said I want to do it, he would have supported it.”

Trout, 22, said Scioscia’s concerns were the toll the extra swings could take on his body.

“You always have to respect your manager, do what’s right for you and your team and your body, for sure,” he said.

Trout is batting .310 with 22 home runs, 73 RBI and an AL-best 1.005 OPS.

“It’s funny, I’m not really a home run hitter guy, if that makes sense,” Trout said. “I’m not trying to hit home runs during the game. I’m just trying for base hits, and the ball goes out of the park.

“But it’s fun to take some rounds in [batting practice]. In the near future, if I get an opportunity, I might do it.”

 

Others skip Derby, too

White Sox rookie Jose Abreu leads the AL with 29 homers, despite spending 15 days on the disabled list with tendinitis in his ankle.

“Coming into the season, that wasn’t a goal of mine, to participate in a Home Run Derby,” Abreu said. “If life gives me the opportunity in the future, and I feel like it’s the right opportunity, then I feel like I’d be happy participating. But this year, it wasn’t something that I wanted.”

Baltimore’s Nelson Cruz ranks second in the AL with 28 home runs.

“I had the chance to be there once [in 2009 when he was runner-up to Prince Fielder],” Cruz said. “I think it’s a great event. It’s a great experience, but right now, what my team needs is for me to rest and be focused for the second half.”

Toronto’s Edwin Encarnacion ranks third in the AL with 26 home runs but is on the disabled list with a strained quad.

So, none of the AL Derby contestants ranked in the top five in home runs. Josh Donaldson has 20 homers, Brian Dozier 18, Jose Bautista 17, Adam Jones 16 and Yoenis Cespedes 14.

 

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Cleveland 28 2nd Qtr 9:55
Indiana 24
Washington 25 2nd Qtr
Philadelphia 28
Golden State 6:30 PM
Toronto
New York 6:30 PM
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Atlanta
Charlotte 6:30 PM
Boston
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Memphis
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Houston
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New Orleans
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Chicago
Utah 8:00 PM
Denver
San Antonio 9:00 PM
Sacramento
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LA Lakers
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Portland
Boston 1 2nd Prd
New Jersey 0
Calgary 0 1st Prd 2:57
NY Islanders 1
Washington 0 1st Prd 4:33
Carolina 0
Chicago 0 1st Prd 20:00
Tampa Bay 0
Colorado 7:30 PM
Dallas
Los Angeles 9:00 PM
Anaheim
Siena 37 2nd Half 11:41
Quinnipiac 54
Harvard 21 2nd Half 20:00
Cornell 22
Penn 20 1st Half 4:15
Brown 34
Fairfield 19 1st Half 7:40
Canisius 20
Manhattan 24 1st Half 6:41
Iona 32
Saint Peters 13 1st Half 7:47
Marist 23
Princeton 32 1st Half 1:43
Yale 30
Ohio 7:00 PM
Akron
Dartmouth 7:00 PM
Columbia
Valparaiso 9:00 PM
Cleveland State
Louisiana Tech 75 FINAL
Texas-El Paso 88
Seton Hall 34 1st Half 5:03
Xavier 16
Cornell 22 1st Half 3:45
Harvard 20
Yale 16 1st Half 3:00
(14) Princeton 27
Elon 19 1st Half 3:55
Drexel 17
Northeastern 21 1st Half 4:20
James Madison 26
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Butler 16
Creighton 31 1st Half 3:55
Georgetown 25
Brown 19 1st Half 3:56
Penn 27
Columbia 13 1st Half 4:34
Dartmouth 22
Canisius 15 1st Half 4:44
Siena 14
St Josephs Brooklyn 5 1st Half 16:50
NJIT 4
Western Carolina 27 1st Half 7:35
UNC Greensboro 10
Colorado 7:00 PM
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Providence 7:30 PM
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