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Manny Machado’s derby chances

Whether Manny Machado wins or comes in last at the home run Derby, this is an opportunity for him to showcase himself to a world-wide audience.

Whether Manny Machado wins or comes in last at the home run Derby, this is an opportunity for him to showcase himself to a world-wide audience.

Las Vegas is not giving Manny Machado much of a chance in the Home Run Derby taking place on Monday Night. He has the lowest odds to win at 15/2. Toronto’s Josh Donaldson and Los Angeles’ Joc Pederson are the next least likely at 6/1 odds.

Realistically, Machado should be the biggest long-shot to win the Derby. Kris Bryant is the lowest seeded in the eight player single-elimination bracket. The seeding is determined by the number of home runs hit by the All-Star but Machado has has significantly more at-bats than Bryant. He has also had more bats than Anthony Rizzo and just does not have anywhere near the pedigree of power that Prince Fielder has. Machado is also the only participant with an average home run length of less than 400 feet.

But just because Machado is the biggest underdog of the Home Run Derby it does not mean he cannot give another hitter a run for their money.

In this new format, not only are hitters timed but they advance by hitting more home runs than just one person, not the field like in years past.

In the first round of the Home Run Derby, Machado is slated to face Peterson. The Dodger’s outfielder has 20 home runs in 300 at-bats but keep in mind, the Home Run Derby is very difficult for first timers. Of course, this is Machado’s first Home Run Derby as well but Pederson is a rookie on top of it.

The new format also has switched from a 10-out frame to a five-minute clock, with time bonuses for home runs hit a certain distance. Pederson already expressed his concern about swinging for five minutes straight.

Should Machado advance, he will take on either the rookie Bryant or the future Hall of Famer Albert Pujols. Pujols has to top seed in the tournament with 26 home runs.

Machado just needs to swing, though, and worry about his own pitches.

But whether he wins or loses, being in the Derby is a great thing for Machado and the Orioles. The young slugger is on his way to being a star and this will give him the national exposure he deserves. He is having a simply remarkable season, an MVP-caliber season, but a lot of time those awards are political selections, going to the most popular players of the most deserving. This even, as well as the All-Star game, will give the budding star a stage to showcase his ability to a world-wide audience.

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Corey Johns

Editor in Chief
You could say Corey was born to become a sports journalist. His father won a national championship coaching college soccer. His mother is a baseball fanatic who hasn't missed seeing an Orioles game since 1983 (literally, sometimes it's annoying). His great uncle was a big-time boxing promoter and his maternal grandfather was once a department head at the Baltimore Sun. Basically, sports and journalism run through his blood. He played just about every little league sports there was when he was a kid and was a multi-sport athlete in high school; even playing in the first-ever high school sanction Rugby game in the country. Eventually he retired from sports as an undefeated Maryland state Rugby champion as a high school senior. Perhaps lack of athletic talent has more to do with the retirement, but he will tell you that it more had to do with a great desire to jump right into media. Upon his graduation from University of Maryland, Baltimore County as a triple communications major, Corey started the So Much Sports network and has continued to grow his websites and continues to work to make them premier sports media outlets.

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