The 2021 MLB Home Run Derby is upon us and Coors Field should be a launching pad Monday evening. There are some impressive sluggers taking part in the festivities, but baseball fans will have their eye on one guy in particular.
Los Angeles Angels phenom Shohei Ohtani has left fans with their jaws dropped throughout the season. His impressive skills as both a hitter and a pitcher are drawing comparisons to Babe Ruth, but in reality he’s taking this all further than the Bambino did. Ohtani is the top seed in Monday’s Home Run Derby and then in Tuesday’s All-Star Game, he’s the starting pitcher, designated hitter, and leadoff man for the American League. It’s ridiculous.
There will be plenty to enjoy on Tuesday, but for now, we’ll use this article to track his performance before and during the Home Run Derby. Enjoy it all on ESPN!
9:45 p.m. — Welp, Shohei Ohtani’s night ends early. Soto hit three home runs on his three swings. Ohtani then came up and hit his first swing into the dirt. Soto advances to face Pete Alonso.
9:39 p.m. — We’re headed to a three-swing swing-off! Soto hit six home runs in his minute of extra time and then Ohtani matched him. Ohtani had three shots to get a seventh and advance but couldn’t get it done. To the three-swing swing-off!
9:32 p.m. — What a bonus! Ohtani hit six home runs to tie Soto and force a 60-second swing-off.
9:31 p.m. — Ohtani was slow out of the gate, but picked up some speed after a timeout. Mike Trout gave him a call during the timeout and that seemed to help. Ohtani finished regulation with 16 and is now into the bonus period.
9:24 p.m. — Ohtani is up. He needs to get up to 23 after Juan Soto hit 22 to open the matchup. Soto has the longest HR of the night so far, going 520 feet.
9:04 p.m. — It’s almost time for Shohei Ohtani to face Juan Soto, but the phenom took some time to watch Pete Alonso entertain the fans.
Ohtani takes a break in the batting cage to watch Alonso. Also: listen why Ohtani eats alone. pic.twitter.com/4KvzhyUvoB— Ohtani-san (@Ohtani_Fans) July 13, 2021
7:48 p.m. — At least one bettor is backing up Ohtani in a big way, according to DraftKings Sportsbook.
BIG-ASS BET— DraftKings Sportsbook (@DKSportsbook) July 12, 2021
A bettor has placed a $10,000.00 bet on Shohei Ohtani to win the Home Run Derby.
The bet would payout $32,500.00... pic.twitter.com/XyNBoD7wfn
Shohei Ohtani is taking batting practice ahead of the Home Run Derby. And the Coors Field environment is already a factor.
OHTANI ALMOST LEFT THE YARD IN BATTING PRACTICE pic.twitter.com/rcmVYlpZmy— ESPN (@espn) July 12, 2021
Here’s another angle of Ohtani’s moon shot.