Todd Frazier was the big surprise in Monday's Home Run Derby at Target Field in Minnesota, but it was the weather that really stole the show.
It started with a light rain and then temperatures hovered around the lower 60's and it caused a miserable night for the long ball. The most homers by any player in a given round was ten by Jose Bautista in the first round. Last year's winner Yoenis Cespedes launched 17 in last year's derby.
Cespedes had the formula again on Monday to capture the crown for the second year in a row, but much like Frazier, it was not an easy road to get there. Bautista led the way for the American League, but the next closest was Adam Jones (4), with teammates Cespedes and Josh Donaldson tying at three, and Twins second baseman Brian Dozier in last with two. The National League was led by Giancarlo Stanton (6) then it was Troy Tulowitzki (4), and a tie between Justin Morneau and Frazier (2). Yasiel Puig was the only player to finish without a home run in the competition.
Those who tied participated in three extra swings to decide the first round winner. Frazier was able to hit one out as Morneau failed to copy the feat and was eliminated. Cespedes went 2-2 in his first two swings to oust his fellow A, Donaldson. Frazier then met up with Tulowitzki in the second round and smacked six homers to Tulo's one to advance to the semifinals against Stanton. Cespedes outdid Jones 9-3 in their matchup to face Bautista.
The lack of homers once again favored Frazier as beat Stanton 1-0 to advance to the finals. Cespedes and Bautista made it a little more interesting with the Cuban outfielder taking the round 7-4. Cespedes was too much for Frazier as he won in a landslide, 9-1 to end the 2014 derby.
The players will now focus on the All-Star Game, which takes place tomorrow. Five Reds: Fraizer, Johnny Cueto, Aroldis Chapman, Alfredo Simon, and Devin Mesoraco, will represent the Queen City as they try to claim home field advantage for the National League.