SEATTLE MARINERS

Highlights: Mariners’ Julio Rodríguez steals the show in HR Derby

Jul 18, 2022, 8:02 PM | Updated: 8:24 pm

The story of rookie phenom Julio Rodríguez entering the Home Run Derby was cool enough for Mariners fans. Thing is, the kid came to win.

He nearly did, too.

Joe Fann: Julio reminds us why we cherish homegrown stars

Rodríguez knocked out two-time defending champion Pete Alonso of the New York Mets in the second round but fell in the finals to Nationals star Juan Soto, taking second place in the annual MLB All-Star Week event at Dodger Stadium on Monday night. He nearly became just the second Mariners player ever to win the event, but he did prevent Alonso from joining M’s legend Ken Griffey Jr. as the only players to win the derby three times.

What people may end up remembering the most from this derby, though, is that Rodríguez stole the show by becoming the first player in history to hit over 30 home runs in a round twice in the same derby. All at the age of just 21 years old.

When the night was said and done, Rodríguez had crushed 81 homers (shaking off a swing and miss on his first pitch), and the only storyline from the event that rivaled his breakout was the legendary Albert Pujols surprisingly making it into the second round.

Monday night was just Part 1 of what could be a coming out party for Rodríguez, a budding superstar playing on the hottest team in the league at the All-Star break, in front of a national audience. He’ll make his All-Star Game debut in the 5 p.m. Tuesday night game (airing live on Seattle Sports) alongside Mariners teammate Ty France. Both will be reserves for the American League.

Check out photos from Rodríguez’s performance in the gallery at the top of this post, and look below for video highlights, including all three of his rounds in their entirety.

The first homer of the night

Most meme-able moment (tie)

Round 1

Round 2

Finals

Julio all that was missing to complete M’s rebuild

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Highlights: Mariners’ Julio Rodríguez steals the show in HR Derby