How Can They Be So Bad At Counting Home Runs During The Home Run Derby?

Daniel Shirey. Getty Images.

The Home Run Derby is far and away the best All Star competition of any of the four major sports. The dunk contest is completely dead. The NHL contests are kinda cool, but has nothing that's gonna captivate everyone at home for a night. And then there's the Pro Bowl which is probably the worst annual piece of television we've got right now. Baseball can rest easy at night knowing people are going to watch the Derby every year, but that's not to say it doesn't have its flaws – one of those flaws being counting. 

Over the years baseball has moved away from the simple 10 out system and gone with the semi-rapid fire timer method. It allows you to put up huge numbers like Julio Rodriguez did while sacrificing knowing what's actually going on. You get three minutes to hit as many homers as possible, a timeout, and two potential 30 second bonuses depending if you hit a few out over 440 feet. 


The issue is the way they count the home runs. If you watched last night's derby you'd think the official scorer was watching the same feed we were and kinda just guessing/assuming balls were gone or not. It's complete madness. 

I still don't know if Schwarber truly got robbed or not, but the fact that it's up in the air like this is a problem wouldn't ya say? 

Then you have Soto's championship round where he defeated Julio Rodriguez. Towards the end of the round no one had any clue how many homers he hit. 

I mean what are we doing here? I get it's an exhibition, but there's also a million dollars on the line for the winner along with a lot of people at home gambling to occupy their Monday night. You need to get it right. 

The way I see it, if the Nathan's Hot Dog eating contest can always get it right simply by flipping numbers manually like we're at a rec basketball game, then how is the MLB Home Run Derby this flawed? Feels like counting the homers shouldn't be an issue at the home run derby. 

Doesn't TrackMan handle this shit with ease for golf? Another thing the Derby misses is immediate distance numbers. I care about that just as much as the totals. Randomly you'll see "Home Run Number 5 465 feet" but with all the constant action you have no clue which one that was. Not to beat a dead horse, but this also seems like something TrackMan would solve instantaneously. I need immediate distance numbers for every bomb like the old days. 

The HR Derby is great, but the results are getting finagled with while the broadcast has no idea what's happening. Clean it up. Also get Chris Berman back on the call. Just make sure to give him a towel and a fan blowing in his face constantly before we lose him.