St. Louis Cardinals legend and NL All-Star Albert Pujols upset Philadelphia Phillies slugger Kyle Schwarber in the first round of the 2022 Home Run Derby, with the contest going to a swing off. Pujols and Schwarber tied with 13 home runs in the initial phase despite the latter getting some additional time to hit. Pujols also took several pitches, which opened him up for what looked like an easy loss.
ALBERT PUJOLS WINS THE SWING OFF AND ADVANCES TO THE SEMIFINALS @PujolsFive | #HRDerby pic.twitter.com/HQY4qRBxI3— ESPN (@espn) July 19, 2022
Pujols was listed at +2200 to win the Home Run Derby on DraftKings Sportsbook and +300 to beat Schwarber in the opening round. We’ll see if he can keep this going in the next round when he meets Washington Nationals star Juan Soto.
Pujols got a standing ovation after his round as the players acknowledged his impact on the game and his Hall of Fame career. We don’t know if that had any impact on Schwarber’s performance, as the Phillies slugger seemed a bit slow out of the gate before eventually catching up to Pujols.
This moment when the players honored Albert Pujols pic.twitter.com/7TNh3QaFAb— ESPN (@espn) July 19, 2022
In the swing off, Pujols connected on several home runs in a row to create some distance between him and Schwarber. The Phillies star was unable to get going and came up one home run short of creating another sudden death opportunity.