One of the best stories in baseball is heading to the Home Run Derby.
Baltimore Orioles first baseman Trey Mancini, who missed all of last season while battling stage 3 colon cancer, will participate in the 2021 Home Run Derby.
The Derby is currently scheduled for July 12 at Colorado's Coors Field.
Dan Connolly of The Athletic initially reported Mancini's involvement, noting the player is "psyched to do it."
Among the treatment Mancini underwent last year was the removal of a malignant tumor from his colon and chemotherapy. At some points, he wasn't sure if he would be able to return to baseball, via MLB.com:
“There were times early on when I wasn’t entirely sure I’d be playing baseball again,” Mancini said. “I'd be lying if I'd say that was the first thing that came to mind. The whole time I just wanted to be healthy long-term and live a long life. And baseball definitely was on the back burner when I was going through all that.”
The illness cost Mancini all of 2020, but he still managed to make it back to the field in time for opening day this season. He received a standing ovation when he returned to Camden Yards, and he could see the same treatment in Colorado next month.
Mancini entered Saturday hitting .260/.337/.466 in 74 games with 14 home runs and 52 RBIs, both marks leading the Orioles.
Who else is participating in the Home Run Derby?
Mancini joins a Home Run Derby field that already includes defending champion Pete Alonso and two-way superstar Shohei Ohtani.
There is no shortage of intriguing candidates to join that field, though a large number of marquee power hitters have already said they won't participate. That includes Fernando Tatis Jr., Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Aaron Judge.
Who could end up saying yes? Ronald Acuña Jr. would be fun. So would Juan Soto. Kyle Schwarber, Matt Olson, Rafael Devers and Javier Baez are all doing decently on the home leaderboards as well. We're just spitballing here though.
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