Even though no White Sox players are in the Home Run Derby in 2018, the team has been well represented in the past.
Different formats at the Home Run Derby
The Derby began in 1985 and has always taken place the day before the All-Star Game. If you’ve watched it over the years, you know it has gone through several iterations. The most recent is iteration includes a time limit. Players get extra time if they hit home runs over preset distances.
In previous years, hitters had to hit as many as they could within a series of outs. Players were considered “out” if they did not hit a home run. And, after six “outs” players were finished.
No matter what the format happens to be, there is no arguing that the Derby is one of the most fun events to watch.
Big numbers from Sox sluggers
The most recent White Sox player to hit in the Derby was Todd Frazier. He won the Derby in 2015 when he was with the Cincinnati Reds, but he hit more home runs when he wore the Sox colors in 2016. That year, Frazier hit 42 dingers, but he lost to Giancarlo Stanton, who hit 61 at Petco Park in San Diego.
Only one White Sox player has ever won the Home Run Derby. That honor belongs to Frank Thomas, who actually won the Derby with three home runs in the third round. That year, he beat Albert Belle at the competition at The Ballpark at Arlington. But, this wasn’t Thomas’s first time. He finished in the second round of the Derby in 1994 at the competition at Three Rivers Stadium in Pittsburgh.
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The first Derby was held in 1985 at The Metrodome in Minneapolis. In the inaugural season, Fisk hit four, which was enough to put him in a tie for second place. The winner that year was Dave Parker, who hit six. This seems like peanuts compared to the crazy number that players put up with the four-minute time limit, today. Fisk competed against other legends like Cal Ripken, Jr. and Steve Garvey.
In the 2000’s, the Sox were represented in 2002 and 2006. In 2002, at Miller Park in Milwaukee, Paul Konerko tried his hand at hitting the most home runs. He was knocked out in the second round, but not after he and Jason Giambi had to have a “swingoff” having both hitting six dingers in that round. Giambi ended up winning the event.
It took four years before a Sox player showed up in the Derby. Jermaine Dye entered the contest in PNC Park in Pittsburgh in 2006. Of Sox hitters, he performed the worst – getting knocked out in the first round after hitting seven. In 2006, he faced off against power hitters like David Ortiz and Miguel Cabrera. Ryan Howard won the event with 23 home runs.