Toronto Blue Jays slugger Vladimir Guerrero Jr. became the latest player to commit to the 2023 Home Run Derby on Thursday.
The first baseman joins Seattle Mariners outfielder Julio Rodriguez and Los Angeles Dodgers superstar Mookie Betts, who also entered the contest Thursday, as the only confirmed competitors.
The event is set to take place July 10 at T-Mobile Park in Seattle, one day before the Midsummer Classic.
Guerrero is hitting .280/.349/.447 with 18 doubles and 49 RBIs in 78 games, although his power numbers have taken a hit. He’s slugged just 11 round-trippers this year, with only two coming at home. The 24-year-old said he’s hoping participating in the derby will ultimately help his swing going forward, according to Sportsnet’s Ben Nicholson-Smith.
This will be Guerrero’s second appearance in the derby. He finished as the runner-up in 2019, hitting a record 91 homers through the three rounds but losing to New York Mets slugger Pete Alonso.
Blue Jays manager John Schneider will pitch to Guerrero at the event, as he did in 2019, according to Nicholson-Smith.
Guerrero was a finalist for the American League’s All-Star starting spot at first base but lost the vote to Yandy Diaz.