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Mariners rookie Julio Rodriguez to compete in Home Run Derby

Wed, Jul 13, 2022
MLB News (AP)

Mariners rookie Julio Rodriguez to compete in Home Run Derby

WASHINGTON (AP) - Mariners rookie Julio Rodriguez will compete in the All-Star Home Run Derby at Dodger Stadium next Monday.

Rodriguez will be the 14th rookie to particpate, and only two of those have won outright: Pete Alonso in 2019 and Aaron Judge in 2017. Alonso is the two-time defending champion and leads the eight-person field for this year's Derby along with the Cardinals' Albert Pujols, Phillies' Kyle Schwarber and Nationals' Juan Soto.

Rodriguez announced his entry on social media. The 21-year-old leads major league rookies with 15 home runs entering Wednesday and is third with a .477 slugging percentage. That's after going homerless over his first 20 career games and recording his first career home run May 1.

He is the seventh player in Mariners club history to participate in the Home Run Derby and the first since Robinson Cano in 2016. Hall of Famer Ken Griffey, Jr. is the only Mariners player to ever win (three times: 1994, 1998 & 1999).

The Seattle outfielder, who is hitting .274 with 44 RBIs, 50 runs and 21 stolen bases, was announced as a member of the American League All-Star Team on Sunday.

He sat out the opener of Wednesday's day-night doubleheader in Washington but is in the lineup for the second game.

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