MLB

Cano: 'No chance' he'll pick Butler for derby

06/11 9:06 PM

With the New York Mets hosting the 2013 All-Star Game, third baseman David Wright has opted to return to the Home Run Derby for the first time in seven years.

The Yankees' Robinson Cano will be a Home Run Derby captain again this season, but he still won't pick Billy Butler for his American League team.

"No chance," Cano said with a smile.

In last season's Derby in Kansas City, Royals fans mercilessly booed Cano for leaving Butler off the AL Derby team after he had pledged to include a Royal.

Cano also said Royals fans "crossed the line" by targeting his family last season. But even after last year's unpleasantness, Cano said he was still honored to be selected as captain for this year's event at Citi Field.

"Yes, of course, especially with the things that I went through last year. I would say that's not a good way to end it. It's special that it's in New York," Cano said. "Why not? I can't wait for that day to happen. Now I've just got to wait and see who's doing good around the league and start thinking about who I'm going to pick. I've got a month left, but I'm going to sit down and think about who I'm going to pick and who's going to do it."

David Wright of the host Mets will captain the National League squad, returning to the Home Run Derby for the first time in seven years.

In his only previous Home Run Derby, Wright finished as the runner-up in Pittsburgh in 2006 to Philadelphia Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard, with catcher Paul Lo Duca serving as his pitcher.

This year's event will take place at 8 p.m. ET July 15 at Citi Field and will be televised by ESPN.

Prince Fielder won last year's Derby in Kansas City and the AL beat the NL, 61-21, in team scoring.

Wright recently told ESPNNewYork.com about participating this season after bypassing it for several years.

"Obviously, under the circumstances, this is a little different," Wright said.

"I don't think it messes too much with your swing. The biggest thing, for me, is I did it once and I enjoyed it. Honestly, I probably don't think I can do much better."

Wright said he "ran out of gas" when he participated in '06 and lost in the finals to Howard.

That year, bullpen catcher Dave Racaniello originally was supposed to throw to Wright at PNC Park, but had a back problem and was unable. Lo Duca stepped in and pitched Wright into the final round.

"He ran out of gas, too," Wright said.

Cano, who won the event in 2011, failed to hit a single homer in the competition last season.

"Yeah, I love it," Cano said. "I would say that's one of the fun things in the All-Star Game. That's the only time I get a chance to spend time, not only with your American League players but with both sides. You get a chance to take a photo; those are memories you can take and show your kids later on when you retire."

Picking a team and hitting in this year's event in New York -- even in Queens -- will be easier than Kansas City, Cano said.

"Now that you're in New York, you get to pick whoever you want. Now I don't have to pick David Wright because he's on the other side. It's fun," Cano said. "I always say I've done it away twice. Now you do it at home where you have your crowd and the greatest fans in the world get a chance to see you swinging in the Home Run Derby."

Cano said he would have his father pitch to him again.

"Oh, yes sir. Why not? We're .500. One for two," Cano said.

ESPNNewYork.com's Adam Rubin and Wallace Matthews contributed to this report.


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