Who Wins The Pre-Derby?
Ryan Braun probably warrants talking point No. 1 in the Miami Marlins pitchers meeting heading into this series. But they would do well not to forget the other Brewers big slugger, Eric Thames.
Thames headlines a potent Brewers lineup in the power department, and will make it three players with 20 HRs or more taking hacks this weekend at Miller Park. To put what we might be about to witness in perspective, Brewers third baseman Travis Shaw has 17 HRs on the year and Braun has hit just south of 300 HRs in his career.
Neither one of those guys is even in the Top 4 for 2017 HR leaders facing off in this one.
So it seems pretty likely we will be seeing the ball leaving the yard in a hurry in this series. The Marlins will definitely need to break out their boomsticks to be winners, as all of these games could end up being slugfests.
Giancarlo Stanton is already locked in, health permitting, for the Derby. He could go homerless for the duration and still compete. But Thames, Ozuna, maybe even a reignited Justin Bour? All could pad their candidacies for the Derby spotlight with strong performances. It should be a lot of fun watching these sluggers swing for the fences.