Greatest Home Run derby performances

Aaron Judge
Aaron Judge is one of the best Home Run Derby performers ever. Photo from Pinstripe Alley.

Even more than the All-Star Game itself, one of the best parts of the yearly MLB All-Star festivities is the Home Run Derby. It seems like every year fans are treated to a memorable show, which is why there is plenty of debate regarding the best Home Run Derby of all time. Nevertheless, we’ve tried to do just that with our list of the greatest Home Run Derby performances in MLB history.

Todd Frazier, 2015

Cincinnati hosted the All-Star Game in 2015 in the midst of a terrible season, but Todd Frazier gave them something to cheer for during the Home Run Derby.

Not only did Frazier impress in front of the hometown fans but he also made things dramatic by winning each round by a single home run. In the first round, it was 14-13 over Prince Field and then 10-9 over Josh Donaldson. With time running out in the finals, Frazier homered twice in 11 seconds to top Joc Pederson 15-14 to win the derby.

Giancarlo Stanton, 2016

While Giancarlo Stanton benefited from a smaller ballpark, he put on a show with 61 home runs at Petco Park in San Diego over three rounds.

In fact, no ballpark could have held him on that night, as he averaged 446 feet with every home run.

Statcast also tells us that that the 20 hardest-hit homers and 18 of the 19 longest of the derby that year were hit by Stanton.

Aaron Judge, 2017

In the middle of Aaron Judge hitting 52 home runs as a rookie during the 2017 season, he put on a spectacular show at the Home Run Derby.

He was challenged in the First Round when Justin Bour hit 22 long balls. But Judge was able to beat him with a little time to spare.

After that, Judge slowed down a little bit in each round but always beat his opponent comfortably.

He knocked off Cody Bellinger 13-12 with just over a minute left on the clock and beat Miguel Sano 11-10 in the finals with nearly two minutes left.

If he hadn’t gone second in each round, there’s no telling how many homers he could have hit that night. It’s unquestionably one of the greatest Home Run Derby performances ever.

Vladimir Guerrero vs Joc Pederson, 2019

Technically, Pete Alonso won the derby in 2019. But the semifinal between Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Joc Pederson was epic.

Both players hit 29 homers in that round alone, forcing a swing off in which each player got three swings.

Eventually, it went to the third round of the swing off with Guerrero prevailing before losing 23-22 to Alonso in the final.

Josh Hamilton, 2008

Josh Hamilton’s comeback story, in general, was impressive, but he took things to another level at the Home Run Derby.

While he eventually lost in the finals, Hamilton set a single-round record in the first round by hitting 28 homers, some of which measured out at over 500 feet.

It was a spectacular show, especially since it happened on the biggest stage possible at Yankee Stadium.

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