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Shohei Otani bringing his hammer to MLB Home Run Derby

MLB, Shohei Ohtani

Los Angeles Angels two-way sensation has been one of MLB’s top stars in 2021. Now, he will bring the boom to the Home Run Derby during All-Star weekend in Colorado.

Major League Baseball announced Friday Ohtani would be one of the participants for the Home Run Derby at Coors Field. He is likely to be just the first in a a swath of young MLB stars who could enter their names into the competition.

Ohtani has lived up to his gargantuan potential as a two-way star this season.

The 26-year-old currently ranks second in the majors in Wins Above Replacement, per Baseball Reference. He also entered Friday’s action ranked third in homers, with his 19 round-trippers trailing only Toronto Blue Jays sensation Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and San Diego Padres phenom Fernando Tatis Jr., both of whom have 22 homers thus far.

The separator with Ohtani, however, is he has also been one of the best starting pitchers in baseball. Ohtani has made 10 starts for the Angels, amassing a 2.70 ERA and 73 strikeouts in 53 1/3 innings. He is building a reputation as the kind of two-way player MLB has not seen since Babe Ruth.

Who else might enter their name into the 2021 MLB Home Run Derby. Well, both Tatis and Guerrero could very well partake. Atlanta Braves star Ronald Acuna could also throw his hat in the ring, with Cincinnati Reds slugger Jesse Winker posing as another intriguing candidate.

Regardless, Ohtani has commanded the spotlight throughout the current MLB season, and should continue to do so during All-Star weekend next month.