Ryan's Place

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Lee Finishes 3rd in Home Run Derby



In any other year, Carlos Lee's 11 homers in round one of the Century 21 Home Run Derby would have been enough to draw oohs and ahs from his teammates and the crowd.

But not this time. Lee batted two slots behind Bobby Abreu, who slugged a record-breaking 24 homers in the first round of the Derby on Monday at Comerica Park, turning every else's at-bats into a mere sideshow.

Lee, the Milwaukee outfielder who represented his native Panama in the first Home Run Derby to carry a multi-cultural twist, had a fine performance at the plate in front of a packed house of 41,004. He stayed in through the second round before he was eliminated by finalists Abreu and Pudge Rodriguez.

Lee gushed about Abreu's 41 overall homers, poking fun at himself as he recalled his National League teammates trying to make him feel better about his own first-round performance.

"The guys said, 'You hit 11,'" Lee said. "'That's a big number.' I went, 'A big number? He hit 15 more than me!'"

Lee's teammates then reminded him that prior to Abreu's outburst, the previous first-round record was 15. So, Lee was only four off the mark.

"I was like, 'Yea, but he got 24,'" Lee laughed. "It was amazing. He put on a show out there. Everything he was hitting was going out of the park."

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