The 2019 MLB Home Run Derby is set to kick off tonight at Progressive Field in Cleveland. It’s arguably the biggest draw of All-Star Week, serving as a high-flying appetizer to the All-Star Game on Tuesday. This year’s Derby boasts a solid collection of young stars like Vlad Guerrero Jr, Pete Alonso, Alex Bregman, and Ronald Acuna Jr. In anticipation of the Derby, SugarHouse Sportsbook released their odds for tonight.
The 2019 Home Run Derby could provide a real glimpse into how a single event could attract new betters for PA online sports betting. Our friends over at PA Sportsbooks broke down what it could mean for the early market.
Home Run Derby odds
|Vlad Guerrero Jr.||+400|
|Ronald Acuna Jr.||+1100|
Josh Bell +300
Bell has had a very impressive year thus far. In his fourth season in the league, he leads the NL in RBI’s, is also fourth in home runs, third in slugging percentage, and is third in on-base plus slugging. His strong season has helped the Pirates stay in the race for first place in the NL Central.
In addition to having the seventh-highest average exit velocity in the majors (93.3 MPH), he has the fourth-most balls hit over 95 MPH and also hit longest home run (473 feet) among all Home Derby competitors. So it’s pretty easy to see why he’s considered to be the favorite going into tonight.
Pete Alonso +400
In what has been an overall miserable season for the New York Mets, Alonso has been quite the bright spot for them. His 30 home runs is tops among all rookies in addition to being second in the MLB. He is also fifth in slugging percentage and has the second-highest maximum exit velocity in the league.
Alonso will look to become only the second rookie to win the Home Run Derby outright following Aaron Judge’s victory in 2017. But the odds are currently against him, as only two of the last seven rookies to compete in the Home Run Derby have advanced past the first round (Judge in 2017 and Joc Pederson in 2015).
His second cousin is also throwing to him, which may or may not bode well. To the tape!
This is Derek Morgan, Pete Alonso's second cousin who will be throwing to him at the Home Run Derby.
"I feel like we've got a really damn good chance to win this thing," Alonso said. pic.twitter.com/DpKIpBOnXK
— Anthony DiComo (@AnthonyDiComo) July 2, 2019
Yeah, that guy looks like he’s gonna sh*t himself. Pass.
Vlad Guerrero Jr. +400
The other rookie competing in this year’s derby, Guerrero has been one of the most talked-about young guys in the game. In addition to hitting balls that sound insanely aesthetically-pleasing to the ear, his batting practice sessions have become nearly as entertaining as the game, part of the reason he’s a popular pick to win tonight.
Guerrero’s maximum exit velocity of 118.9 is not only the best amongst all competitors this year, it also is the best in the league. At 20 years-old, he is the youngest player ever to partake in the Derby.
And while it’s tempting to fade a popular pick, there’s also this:
Stunned silence befell me.
Matt Chapman +800
Chapman is the last-minute replacement for Christian Yelich, who was forced to back out because of a back injury. Currently in his third season in the league, Chapman is 6th in the AL in home runs (21) and 8th in slugging percentage (.534). He had only hit 24 home runs the entire 2018 season.
He’s currently ninth in the league in average exit velocity at 93.0 MPH, which is right on par with Derby favorite Josh Bell. A Gold-Glove winner last season, Chapman will look to put his power on diplay.
Joc Pederson +800
Pederson is having another solid season for the Dodgers. He’s up to 20 home runs and 42 RBI’s for a Dodgers team that currently boasts the best record in the majors.
This will be Pederson’s second appearance in the Home Run Derby following his 2015 performance in which he finished as the runner-up to Todd Frazier.
Alex Bregman +900
Bregman is having yet another solid season at the plate. He’s fourth in AL in home runs (23) and ninth in slugging percentage (.533).
Bregman has the highest launch angle amongst all competitors, but the shortest average home run distance (379 ft). Progressive Field has their own version of the “Green Monster” in left field, so Bregman is going to need all the lift he can get in order to compete.
Carlos Santana +1000
Santana will be this year’s hometown representative. Players competing on their home field have had success in the past, most notably Bryce Harper in last year’s derby and Todd Frazier in 2015.
Knowing every part of your home field can certainly give you an edge, so we’ll see how well Santana can take advantage of it.
Ronald Acuna Jr. +1100
Despite primarily being the Braves’ leadoff hitter, Acuna has put up some solid power numbers this year. His 21 home runs are good for 11th in the NL and possesses above average exit velocity. He is also eighth in the league and tops amongst Derby participants in average home run distance (422 ft).
Home Run Derby pick
While Josh Bell is my pick to win, I like betting value on Joc Pederson and Alex Bregman, both of whom have competed in the Home Run Derby before. In fact, Pederson’s odds have gone down to +500 at William Hill Sportsbook, which we find to be frequently out ahead on long shot winners.
There’s also some value on Ronald Acuna Jr. at +150 against the favorite Josh Bell in the first round, or even +1100 overall. While Bell is an elite performer in these categories as well, Acuna has the highest average home run distance of any competitor at 422 feet. He’s in the top half of average fly ball distance. And his barrels-per-swing, which we’ll happily call BPS, is the second-highest among all competitors.
Betting the Home Run Derby at SugarHouse Sportsbook
In addition to standard futures-style betting on the Home Run Derby, you can bet on head-to-head, first round winner, and by league, at SugarHouse Sportsbook in PA. New users can get their first deposit matched up to $250 by clicking here.
Those of you in New Jersey can get in on the action at the following sites: