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Nolan Arenado: ‘I’m tired of coming to the ballpark and losing’

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Mets starter Jacob deGrom isn’t the only one tired of losing. Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado expressed the same sentiment on Friday, Nick Groke of The Athletic reports. Coincidentally, the Rockies entered play Sunday on a three-game winning streak, but are still 41-42 and in fourth place in the NL West.

Arenado said, “I just get pissed because I don’t want to lose anymore. I’ve only been to the playoffs once and it was only one game. And I really want more than that.” Indeed, the Rockies lost the 2017 NL Wild Card game 11-8 to the Diamondbacks, their only postseason appearance during Arenado’s career.

Arenado continued, “I’m tired of coming to the ballpark and losing. We work too hard as a group to experience that. I’m not saying I go home questioning, like, ‘I don’t like this place.’ I love it here. But yeah, I want to win. And the more we lose, the more I — if you lose all the time, nobody wants to be there.”

The Rockies have Arenado under team control for one more year as he enters his fourth and final year of arbitration eligibility after the season. He’s earning $17.75 million this season. The Rockies aren’t under any pressure to move Arenado, at least not until the offseason or this time next year. In the meantime, Arenado is hoping the front office makes upgrades via trade so the club can hang around in the NL West with the Diamondbacks, Dodgers, and Giants. Arenado said, “There’s urgency. There has to be. I know we’re only at the halfway point, but we’re not trying to lose ground. These other teams, they’re going to pick up guys. The Diamondbacks, the Dodgers, the Giants, they’re going to make moves if they’re close. We have to stay close because we want to be able to compete with those teams. But the more ground we lose, we’re going to be in trouble. They’re going to be better and we have to trust who we have in here because that’s how (the front office) usually approach it.”

Bryce Harper defeats Kyle Schwarber 19-18 to win the 2018 Home Run Derby

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Bryce Harper, who said he was tired after taking his cuts in the first round, certainly appeared gassed in the final round. So, too, did his dad, who was throwing to him. But Harper caught fire, going on a tear and tying Kyle Schwarber with 18 home runs before time expired in the final round of the 2018 Home Run Derby. Harper unlocked 30 seconds of bonus time by hitting two home runs at least 440 feet. With his second swing in bonus time, Harper homered to straightaway center field for No. 19. He tossed his bat in celebration, grabbed his trophy, then gave it to his dad before he was mobbed on the field by his All-Star teammates.

Harper hit 13 home runs in the first round, eliminating Freddie Freeman and advancing to the semifinals. In the semis, Harper topped Max Muncy 13-12 to advance to the finals. On Schwarber’s side of the bracket, he bested Alex Bregman 16-15, then defeated Rhys Hoskins 21-20.

Harper is the first member of the Nationals (or Expos) to win the Home Run Derby. Harper participated in the 2013 Derby but finished in second place behind Yoenis Céspedes. Harper is also the first left-handed hitter to win the Derby since Prince Fielder in 2012. The only players to win the Derby in their home park are Todd Frazier in 2015 and Ryne Sandberg in 1990.

As a spectator, the 2018 Home Run Derby was tons of fun. The four-minute clock adds a lot of tension and intrigue even to the initial rounds. Seeing teammates cheer and get excited for their teammates in the Derby is really fun. Of course, watching dinger after dinger is cool, too. Can’t wait for next year.