Published July 12, 2011
PHOENIX (Reuters) - Robinson Cano of the New York Yankees belted a record 12 home runs in the final round to overtake Adrian Gonzalez of the Boston Red Sox and win Monday's Home Run Derby on the eve of the 82nd All-Star Game.
"This is a very proud moment for me to present you with the 2011 Home Run Derby championship," Torre said on the field. "And don't forget to give your dad a hug."
Cano and Red Sox first baseman Gonzalez were tied with 20 home runs, dispatching better known home run hitters such as David Ortiz and Prince Fielder after two rounds to set up a scintillating final long-ball duel at Chase Field.
Gonzalez, who leads the American League in batting average at .354 and the major leagues in runs batted in with 77 so far this season, stroked 11 home runs to take his total to 31.
Cano, however, met the daunting target with blast after blast, drawing roars of delight from the packed stadium.
Any swing that failed to produce a home run counted as an out and each player was allowed 10 outs in the round. The Dominican had used just six outs when he went on a final power surge.
After Cano rocketed a majestic shot measured at 472 feet to tie Gonzalez on 31, his father walked off the mound toward his son, smiling and holding up one finger to show what he had left to do and gave him a warm hug.
Jose Cano, who pitched 23 innings for the Astros in 1989, returned to the mound and Robinson hit his next pitch on a line into the right-field stands to claim victory.
Cano and Gonzalez, who were joined by Boston's Ortiz and major league home run leader Jose Bautista of Toronto, carried the American League to an easy win over the National League quartet of Milwaukee's Fielder and Rickie Weeks, Matt Holliday of the Cardinals and Matt Kemp of the Dodgers.
Fielder hit only nine home runs, but one was measured at 474 feet for the longest blast of the competition.
(Reporting by Larry Fine in New York; Editing by John O'Brien)