Kyle Schwarber’s Chicago Cubs teammate, Javier Baez, watched him compete in the Home Run Derby from ESPN’s broadcast booth on the field Monday at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C..
“We’re going to have a great show from Schwarber,” Baez said.
Schwarber, a Middletown High School graduate seeded fifth, delivered by advancing to the final round in his first appearance in the event. He lost 19-18 to Washington Nationals slugger Bryce Harper, who was playing in front of his home crowd.
Schwarber beat No. 4 seed Alex Bregman 16-15 in the first round. Bregman, of the Houston Astros, hit the top of the wall with his final swing.
In the semifinals, No. 8 seed Rhys Hoskins, of the Philadelphia Phillies, went first and hit 20 home runs. Schwarber hit his 21st home run in the final seconds.
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Schwarber, who has 18 home runs this season and 64 in his career, said competing in the Home Run Derby was on his bucket list.
“It’s one of those things you grow up watching (Ken) Griffey and (Mark) McGwire,” Schwarber said. “Now that I can do it, it’s a thing you want to do at least once.”
Schwarber’s agent, Jason Romano, was his pitcher.
“He's been throwing to me down in Florida in the off-season,” Schwarber said, “and he's a great dude and well-deserved. I would have picked my dad, but he's a little bit too old.”