2014 Home Run Derby: New Format, Start Time, TV


Jul 15, 2013; Flushing , NY, USA; American League player

Yoenis Cespedes

of the Oakland Athletics hits the winning home run in the final round of the Home Run Derby in advance of the 2013 All Star Game at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports

What: 2014 Home Run Derby

When: July 14th

Where: Target Field, Minneapolis

Start Time: 8 pm


After last years derby fans complained that annual preceding the mid-summer classic moved too slowly.  Another criticism was that the best home run hitters were tired by the final leading to a lack luster finish.

In response to the criticism MLB has changed the format of the even that will keep the pace moving and the biggest hitters fresh. The derby will consist of a new bracket format that will determine a champion from each league and guarantee an inter-league final. 5 participants from each league personally selected  by each caption will compete for a spot in the finals and the title home run derby champion.

See Related: Home Run Derby Participants and Predictions

However the rules do contain a wrinkle.  The player with the highest home run total from each league in the first round will automatically advance to the semi-final.  That will leave players to decide whether to go for the bye or pace themselves to keep a rhythm.

Here is the new format as posted on MLB.com

Round 1

  • Ten participants total; five participants representing each league.
  • Batting order will be determined prior to the event. Hitter No. 1 for the NL will hit first followed by Hitter No. 1 for the AL (home team). This order will continue for hitters Nos. 2-5 for each league, with the NL going first followed by the AL.
  • Each participant will receive seven outs.
  • The player from each league who hits the most home runs (AL 1; NL 1) will automatically advance to round three (semifinals).
  • The next two participants with the most home runs from each league (AL 2; AL 3 / NL 2; NL 3) advance to Round 2.

Round 2

  • The two participants advancing from Round 1 for each league will compete against each other (AL 2 vs. AL 3 / NL 2 vs. NL 3).
  • The NL matchup will occur first, followed by the AL matchup, with NL 2 and AL 2 choosing if they want to hit first or second.
  • Each participant will receive seven outs.
  • The winners from the Round 2 matchups (one from each league) will advance to Round 3 (semifinals).

Round 3 (Semifinals)

  • The top seed from each league (AL 1; NL 1) will face the winner from his league’s Round 2 matchup.
  • The NL matchup will occur first, followed by the AL matchup, with NL 1 and AL 1 choosing if they want to hit first or second.
  • Each participant will receive seven outs.
  • The participant from each league with the most home runs will advance to the Finals.

Round 4 (Finals)

  • The semifinal winners (one player from each league) will compete for the crown of Home Run Derby champion.
  • The batting order will be determined by a coin flip, which will be held at a meeting at home plate between the two finalists and their league captains (note that a finalist and team captain could be the same participant).
  • Each finalist will receive seven outs.


  • If two or more players are tied for advancement into the next round or for the championship, each player will receive three swings to hit as many home runs as possible. If they are still tied after threeswings, they will each take one swing. This process is repeated if necessary until one player wins the swing-off.