Amidst what is shaping up to be a career year, Max Muncy earned a spot on the Phase 2 ballot for the 2021 MLB All-Star Game. Whether Muncy will compete in the 2021 Home Run Derby, however, is still yet to be decided.
When healthy, Muncy has been as impactful as any player at the plate this season, ranking second in baseball in on-base percentage (.419). Additionally, his 17 home runs lead the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Staying healthy, however, has been a bit of a challenge this year, and participation in the Home Run Derby could further exacerbate lingering injuries.
“I’ve been dealing with some injuries, so it would have to be one of those things where I see how I’m feeling,” Muncy answered when asked if he would be open to participating in the slugfest at Coors Field.
“If I don’t make the All-Star Game, that’s a for sure not going to be doing the Home Run Derby. We’ll see where I’m at when that time comes.”
Muncy participated in the 2018 Home Run Derby despite not being selected for that year’s All-Star Game. Though he didn’t win the Derby, he homered 18 times en route to a first-round victory over Chicago Cubs shortstop Jávier Baez.
Muncy suffered an oblique strain against the Texas Rangers on June 12, and the Dodgers have handled his return with extra precaution. To Muncy, the Home Run Derby doesn’t seem worth the risk of stalling his recovery.
“Yeah, always,” he said when asked about whether his oblique was impacting his decision to participate. “I’ve been dealing with injuries so I would have to see where I’m at. To reiterate, if I’m not in the All-Star Game, I 100% for sure would not be doing the Home Run Derby.
“If I do get to the All-Star Game, I still don’t know what my answer would be for that. I think to err on the side of caution and get rest, but we’ll have to see.”
Current 2021 Home Run Derby participants
Shohei Ohtani, Los Angeles Angels
Trevor Story, Colorado Rockies
Pete Alonso, New York Mets
Trey Mancini, Baltimore Orioles
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