Most of what I have to say about that Home Run Derby would be incoherent screaming.
I’ll admit, at the outset, I was worried about Pudge being there. He’s not a home run hitter, really, he’s a doubles guy, and this year in particular he’s been having a bit of a power slump. I love Pudge to little, tiny Pudge pieces, don’t get me wrong, but I was worried that he would be embarrassed in the Derby, and I hate to see My Guys embarrassed.
He squeaked in with the last slot in the first round, and northerly neighbor Jason Bay was the one embarrassed, along with all those poor sods who bet on Mark Teixiera winning the whole thing.
Then in the second round….
I do hope this’ll silence a lot of that ‘Pudge lost all his power this year’ chatter. His struggles at the plate are an eye thing, a mechanics thing, not a lack of sudden muscular density thing. OK? Look, the dude was mashing at Comerica Park, you can’t deny that he’s still got it in him.
He put on a good show in the third round, but Bobby Abreu is apparently inhuman, and there’s not much you can do about that.
Still, there are few things more wonderful to see than Pudge trotting up to Abreu in the first round to towel him off, Pudge chatting and bumping fists with Bartolo Colon on the sidelines, Pudge shooting a few balls into the seats, Pudge getting a great big hug from his son Dereck (who looks. exactly. like him. It’s kinda scary, but at the same time adorable).
Pudge Rodriguez: he’s MY Tiger!
By the by, Futures Game chatter will be up as soon as The Internship stops kicking my ass long enough for me to write it. So you’ve got that to look forward to.