Hillsboro, Oregon —— On Tuesday night, the Northwest League and the Pioneer League came together for a joint All-Star Game at Hillsboro’s beautifully modern Ron Tonkin Field. Before the game, the leagues held a home run derby involving six total participants (three from each league), including: Daniel Jipping (Colorado Rockies), Robby Rinn (Kansas City Royals), Craig Dedelow (Chicago White Sox; pictured at the top of this post), Luis Paz (Los Angeles Dodgers), Eudy Ramos (Arizona Diamondbacks), and Luis Asuncion (San Diego Padres).
Jipping won the home run derby, with 23 total home runs over three rounds that included a bonus minute to break a tie with Rinn for the victory. After the Royals prospect’s second place finish, Dedelow, Paz, Ramos, and Asuncion all only got one round to hit. Luckily, Baseball Census has video of every single swing — at two different angles! — from the NWL/PL Home Run Derby, broken down by player, below.
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Daniel Jipping, OF, Colorado Rockies
Jipping hit 23 long balls to win the home run derby, finishing with a flourish at the end of his bonus round that carried him to victory. A 21-year-old drafted in the 22nd round this summer out of Central Michigan University, Jipping is surprisingly big and physical even beyond hitting at the home run derby, weighing in at 232 pounds with a very solid, muscular build. Through his first 29 games with Boise this year, he’s slashing .227/.336/.518/.854 with nine home runs in just 110 at-bats, though he has whiffed 37 times already compared to 13 walks.
Robby Rinn, 1B, Kansas City Royals
A 24-year-old now in his second professional season with the Kansas City Royals, Robby Rinn came up exactly one long ball short at the home run derby. The lefty-swinging first baseman is having a monster season for Idaho Falls this summer, slashing .362/.455/.533/.988 with 12 doubles, four home runs, 24 walks, and only 17 strikeouts across his first 152 at-bats with the Chukars. Old for the Pioneer League, Rinn will undoubtedly have to prove he can hit at higher levels against more age-appropriate competition, but he’s off to a great start with where the Royals sent him. We recently profiled Robby Rinn outside of the home run derby, too; click here to read our full scouting report on the first baseman.
Craig Dedelow, OF, Chicago White Sox
A 22-year-old drafted in the ninth round this year out of Indiana University, Craig Dedelow has been playing the outfield for Great Falls in the Pioneer League. Through 33 games (136 at-bats) with the Voyagers this summer, Dedelow is slashing .316/.358/.632/.990 with 14 doubles, nine home runs, and nine walks against 18 strikeouts. Interestingly, before the home run derby started, Hillsboro (and Northwest League All-Star) field manager Shawn Roof told me he thought Dedelow was going to win the event, a nod to the lefty swinger’s smooth natural loft and power.
Luis Paz, C/1B, Los Angeles Dodgers
A 21-year-old Dodgers prospect out of Brazil, Luis Paz had some of the best raw power in the home run derby this year, and is leading the Pioneer League in home runs as they enter the season’s second half. The lefty-swinging catcher-turned-first baseman is slashing .260/.319/.472/.791 across two minor league stops in 2017, with 11 doubles, 13 home runs, and 21 walks (against 65 strikeouts) over 254 at-bats (68 games). Paz has caught in the past, but looks to have been moved over to first base recently in a way that may be for good, perhaps in order to take advantage of his power bat. For what it’s worth, Robby Rinn, who finished second in the home run derby, told me he was expecting Paz to take the championship home.
Eudy Ramos, 3B, Arizona Diamondbacks
A 21-year-old third baseman from the Dominican Republic, Eudy Ramos is a fan favorite in Hillsboro, and though he didn’t win the home run derby he took some impressive swings. The infielder was promoted to Low-A Kane County at the end of All-Star Game festivities on Tuesday; up until his promotion to the Midwest League, Ramos had been slashing .315/.358/.444/.801 over 40 games (178 at-bats) with nine doubles, four home runs, and 13 walks against 45 strikeouts for the Hops.
Luis Asuncion, OF, San Diego Padres
A towering 20-year-old kid from the Dominican Republic, Luis Asuncion may have only hit one bomb in the home run derby, but it’s apparent with his length and leverage that he may grow into some serious power one day soon. An outfielder by trade, Asuncion is having a decent go of it in 2017, slashing .277/.331/.421/.753 across his first 159 at-bats (40 games), with ten doubles, two triples, three home runs, 11 walks, and 39 strikeouts for Tri-City. He didn’t show it at the home run derby on Tuesday night, but Asuncion may produce some serious over-the-fence pop in another few years as he grows into his body and better understands how and when to use leverage to produce over-the-fence pop.
Well, those are the Northwest League/Pioneer League All-Star Game home run derby highlights. Again, seriously, if you like the video work we put in around the country, please click this link and hit ‘subscribe’ on our YouTube channel. There are thousands more videos coming to our ever-growing library of prospects from all around baseball.
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