Monday, July 10, 2017

Philadelphia's own Home Run Derby

Pat Burrell wins Philadelphia Home Run Derby
Philadelphia has been home to some prolific sluggers, but it's always fun to debate who possessed the most power and who you would rather see at the plate trailing by a run in the bottom of the ninth.

In honor of tonight's Home Run Derby, we've partnered with Strat-O-Matic and simulated a Home Run Derby of our own involving eight of Philadelphia's greatest home run hitters. We selected the top four franchise leaders from the Phillies and the gone but not forgotten Philadelphia Athletics. We then developed a bracket and for simulation purposes used each player's best home run season to produce the results.

Round One - Bracket One
(1) Mike Schmidt 1980 vs. (4) Sam Chapman 1941
Schmidt hit four homers before even recording an out, coasting to an easy 9-4 win over Chapman.

(2) Ryan Howard 2006 vs. (3) Al Simmons 1930
Having hit 58 homers in 2006, Howard was the favorite but came up short launching just four in the round. Simmons went bananas, peppering the seats at Citizens Bank Park with 13.

Round One - Bracket Two
(2) Bob Johnson 1934 vs. (3) Del Ennis 1948
Both sluggers struggled, each hitting just one homer before going to a five-out tie-breaker where Ennis hit a pair to advance.

(1) Jimmie Foxx 1932 vs. (4) Pat Burrell 2002
Wow. Burrell put on a clinic, crushing 13 dingers while Foxx slammed just one.

Semifinals
(1) Mike Schmidt 1980 vs. (3) Al Simmons 1930
Schmidt carried a hot stick into the semis, crushing 11 dingers with three reaching Ashburn Alley. He hit four straight before recording his final out. Simmons hit three.

(3) Del Ennis 1948 vs. (4) Pat Burrell 2002
The extra cuts in the tie-breaker in the first round seemed to help Ennis as he hit two homers before recording an out, but Burrell followed up his opening round with another strong performance - poking one ball to the seats in left above Harry The K's.

Final
Schmidt launched seven homers this time before recording an out, eventually finishing with 13. Burrell followed with an epic performance himself, tying Schmidt's mark of 13 with just seven outs before drilling the winning homer into the bushes in center to end with 14.

A realistic outcome? Certainly.

Fun to think what if? Most definitely. 
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Follow Patrick on Twitter: @PGordonPBR

BY PATRICK GORDON
Managing Editor
pgordon@philadelphiabaseballreview.com

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