Holliday selected to Home Run Derby
Cardinals slugger celebrates third nomination with two homers
ST. LOUIS -- Cardinals All-Star slugger Matt Holliday was selected to participate in the 2011 State Farm Home Run Derby, Major League Baseball announced on Tuesday. Holliday promptly belted two homers in the Cardinals' 8-1 win over the Reds.
Holliday was picked by National League captain Prince Fielder to team with Fielder, Brewers second baseman Rickie Weeks and Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp. It would be the third appearance for Holliday in the Derby.
"I like to do it, I like to try to hit the ball far," Holliday said on Tuesday. "It's a fun thing that as a kid you always wanted to do, and I always thought if I get the opportunity, I'm going to do it every time."
The 2011 State Farm Home Run Derby will take place on Monday, July 11, at Chase Field in Phoenix.
Holliday participated in the 2007 Derby as a member of the Rockies and in the '10 Derby representing the Cardinals, but did not win either contest. He hit five home runs last year and didn't advance out of the first round.
"I wasn't happy with how I did last year, but I'm going to do the best that I can, like I did last year, and hopefully it's better," Holliday said.
While some players and managers are cautious of participants changing their swings to hit more home runs during the contest, Holliday maintains he will take the same approach he has during his daily batting practice to the Derby.
"That's why I'm willing to do it," Holliday said. "I don't change my swing and my approach, I'll do the same thing that I do every day in batting practice. If I had to change my swing and try harder to hit home runs, I probably wouldn't do it."
Holliday is hitting .320 with 12 homers and 44 RBIs in 62 games this season.
Austin Laymance is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.