CHICAGO – Chicago White Sox rookie slugger Jose Abreu said Sunday he remains undecided on whether to participate in the Home Run Derby, to be held July 14, the day before the All-Star Game, at Target Field in Minneapolis.
Abreu was also named to the American League All-Star team Sunday and said he was at a loss for words over the honor. He is far less enamored with the prospect of participating in a home run contest.
“I haven’t thought about it,” Abreu said through an interpreter. “The one thing I am thinking about is we have seven games to play before the All-Star break and helping the White Sox win and do whatever I can do to help this team win. As far as that, I haven’t thought about it. I can’t see myself thinking about it immediately, but I’ll get there when I get there.”
He won’t be allowed to sit on it too long. The decision on Home Run Derby participants is reportedly due by Tuesday.
Abreu is tied with the Baltimore Orioles' Nelson Cruz for the major league lead in home runs with 27. Abreu has said that participating in the contest has the potential to alter his mechanics at the plate. He said he was a contestant in multiple home run contests in his native Cuba and never won one.
Teammate Chris Sale already knows what decision he hopes Abreu makes.
“I'd really like to see Jose hit in that Home Run Derby, probably just as bad as you guys,” said the White Sox ace, who is in a five-man vote for the final AL All-Star spot.