Frazier aching to get another shot at HR derby title
CINCINNATI (AP) — Reds third baseman Todd Frazier is aching for another chance at the All-Star home run derby after finishing second last season.
This time, he would have home-field advantage. The game and the home run competition will be held at Great American Ball Park in July.
Frazier was a first-time All-Star last season in Minneapolis when he reached the home run derby final and lost to Oakland’s Yoenis Cespedes 9-1. If he makes the All-Star Game and is chosen for the home run derby, he plans to have his brother Charlie pitch to him again like last year.
“I think I need to find some energy in that last round,” Frazier said before Cincinnati’s game against the Atlanta Braves. “Last year, I kind of shriveled off a little bit. But I talked to my brothers. We’re going to figure something out, hopefully, if I get the opportunity to be in it.”
Frazier hit a two-run homer off Mike Foltynewicz in his first at-bat on Tuesday, giving him 11 for the season. He is tied with Washington’s Bryce Harper for the National League lead.
Great American has been one of the most homer-friendly ballparks in the majors since it opened in 2003. Frazier hit 20 of his 29 homers at home last season.
Participating in the home run derby is a career highlight for Frazier, who homered against Japan to help Toms River win the Little League World Series championship in 1998.
“It’s something you dream of in the backyard when you’re 5 years old playing with your buddies,” Frazier said. “And I don’t know who wouldn’t want to be in the home run derby. It’s great. Just to hear your name announced and especially in the city you play for, it gives you goose bumps just to think about it.”
Frazier will be a representative for the All-Star Game at activities around the city in July. Last year, Frazier was one of five Reds who made the showcase game, along with catcher Devin Mesoraco, closer Aroldis Chapman, and starters Johnny Cueto and Alfredo Simon. Mesoraco has been limited this year by a sore hip, and Simon was traded to the Tigers in the offseason.
“Hopefully we can get a bunch of guys in the All-Star Game, and we’ll see from there,” Frazier said.