BOSTON (CBS) — Rafael Devers has crushed 21 homers so far this season, leading the Red Sox and tied for fifth-most in the American League. But the Boston third baseman will not be participating in next week’s Home Run Derby at Coors Field.
Which is too bad, because Devers could have put on quite the show sending blast after blast into Denver’s thin air. But the first-time All-Star said no thanks to MLB’s invite to the annual show of power, according to Red Sox skipper Alex Cora.READ MORE: Revs Become Third Team In MLS History To Reach 70 Points With Thrilling 2-2 Draw In Orlando
“He feels like he’s not a home run hitter in B.P.,” Cora told WEEI’s OMF on Thursday.
Like most Red Sox fans, Cora would have loved to have seen what Devers could have done on Monday night.READ MORE: Jayson Tatum Scores 31, Celtics Get First Win, 107-97 Over Houston
“I wanted Raffy to do it,” said Cora. “I think he was going to be O.K. He got voted in by the fans, and to be part of this, people will know who Raffy Devers is. But I understand why not and I respect that decision.”
Cora said it will be interesting to see how players who do participate in the Home Run Derby swing after the event. Some power hitters have had a hard time getting their usual game form back after swinging for the fences in the Derby, as Red Sox fans saw with Adrian Gonzalez back in 2011. The Sox slugger hit 17 dingers to start that season and was the runner-up in the Derby, but hit just 10 homers in the second half.MORE NEWS: Brad Marchand Scores 28 Seconds In, Bruins Beat Sharks 4-3
At least Boston fans will get to see what Devers can do in Tuesday’s All-Star game. He’s the AL starter at third, one of five Red Sox All-Stars along with shortstop Xander Bogaerts (also a starter), D.H. JD Martinez, and pitchers Nathan Eovaldi and Matt Barnes.