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Nelson Cruz likely won’t participate in the Home Run Derby

Jun 29, 2014, 6:55 PM EDT

Nelson Cruz Nelson Cruz

Nelson Cruz is tied for the major league lead in home runs with Jose Abreu and Edwin Encarnacion at 25 apiece, but the Orioles slugger says he likely will not participate in the upcoming Home Run Derby at Target Field, reports Eduardo A. Encina of the Baltimore Sun.

Though there has been compelling statistical evidence showing that the Home Run Derby does not have an adverse effect on hitters in the second half, Cruz is reticent to participate because he fears that the Home Run Derby could affect his swing.

“I don’t know if it would affect me, but even if it’s two or three games, that could be the difference between us making [the postseason],” Cruz said. “I don’t know if it’s worth that.”

[...]

“It’s not like batting practice, where you’re hitting it all over the field,” Cruz said. “You’re trying to hit a homer on every swing, on every pitch.”

Cruz signed a one-year, $8 million deal with the Orioles on February 22. As a result of his slashing .284/.351/.575 with 25 home runs and 66 RBI, if his production doesn’t crater in the second half, the 33-year-old Cruz will likely be able to parlay his 2014 performance into a multi-year contract, even if he’ll once again be tied to draft pick compensation.

We learned yesterday that Marlins outfielder Giancarlo Stanton accepted National League captain Troy Tulowitzki‘s invitation to participate in the Home Run Derby.

  1. thetxhammer - Jun 29, 2014 at 7:33 PM

    Yet used PED’s knowing it would result in a 50 game suspension and hinder Texas’ chances of making the post season.

    Great logic.

    • joeflaccosunibrow - Jun 29, 2014 at 8:33 PM

      I love the logic too. Regardless, at his age and contract status, he has nothing to gain by participating. It has everything to do about the money. This will be his last contract so he has to maximize. I have no problem with it.

      The cynic in me says that he doesn’t want to waste an injection on the derby.

      Ba-da-bing!

      Don’t forget to tip your wait staff…

    • clydeserra - Jun 29, 2014 at 9:05 PM

      never failed a test

  2. proudlycanadian - Jun 29, 2014 at 8:17 PM

    Edwin Encarnacion is also unlikely to participate.

  3. rcali - Jun 29, 2014 at 9:21 PM

    Smart dude.

  4. norvturnersneck - Jun 29, 2014 at 9:46 PM

    Not a positive test, but he admitted to “making a wrong decision”.
    Aka he juiced.

  5. bronxbomber213 - Jun 29, 2014 at 10:22 PM

    Afraid it will mess with your swing or afraid they will chant steroids when you step up? oh wait you don’t play for the Yankees so why would you get booed for roids! My bad Nellie!

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