I'm going to come right out and say this, I will give short shrift to the non-Cubs match ups in this derby recap. Man, was that a lot of fun to watch especially Kyle and Javy. Let's get to the dongs shall we?
First the non-Cubs in the opening round. Rhys Hoskins hit 17 homers to beat surprise Brewers star Jesus Aguilar. Hometown hero, for now, Bryce Harper easily bested Freddy Freeman only needing 13 homers to top the Braves first baseman.
Kyle Schwarber took on the Astros Alez Bregman in round one. Schwarbs got off to a relatively slow start his first few swings not doing much at all. Then War Bear turned it on big time down the stretch piling up the dingers and ending with 16. As an added treat, Javy provided commentary during Schwarber's turn and it was just as awesome as you would expect. Bregman wasn't hitting majestic homers, but he got uncomfortably close to Kyle. A potential tying homer came up just short of the mark and Schwarber advanced.
Javy Baez faced Max (I assume this name was a create a player on MLB the Show) Muncy in the opening round. Javy was getting pitched to by his big brother Gadiel, who had a bit of trouble getting on the same page as his bro. Once they did El Mago got red-hot putting up 16 bombs of his own, including a majestic 479 foot blast. Then for reasons that strain for logic, Muncy got a turn. He proceeded to hit 17 homers to advance, not only to the next round, but on to my personal enemies list.
War Bear then faced Hoskins in the semi-finals, Rhys went first and posted a fear inducing 20 homers. Kyle Schwarber is scared of no mortal baseballer and took on the challenge with gusto. At first, again he started slow, but that was just to build the drama. Then an epic homer explosion followed, pitch after pitch smashed deep into the Capital air. Finally, as the clock hit zero, he hit his 21st and winning homer with an epic bat flip to boot.
Possible (dare I say likely?) Cub Bryce Harper quickly dispatched known bum Max Muncy to reach the final. Our large adult son once again put on an epic display in the final with 18 dongs to give him a total of 55 for the night. Of course, it appears things were rigged for the home town Harper, who barely pulled out the win in bonus time with 19.
Both Cubs gave truly an outstanding effort and Javy has a definite future in broadcasting. Kyle especially was impressive and he'll get a chance to revenge his loss when both he and Harper are taking batting practice on the Cubs next year.
I wanted to end with a guest comment. Many of you may know Amelia Griffith from her work on twitter (her handle is @ameliacubs12). She is without a doubt the biggest Kyle Schwarber fan on earth. So I solicited her opinion on Schwarber's performance and his season in general. I have to say it's pretty good, give her a follow. Here are her closing thoughts....
I’m just really proud of what he’s accomplished so far in 2018. It’s finally feeling like after a rollercoaster of ups and downs he’s really started to find his footing and it feels like he’s settling into what’s going to be an absolutely phenomenal career. He’s gotten really good at getting on base and has developed so much patience at the plate, but those 55 derby home runs were such a fun reminder that at his core he is a slugger, and I’ll be holding out for a season where he actually hits that many.