Trout: MLB asks about HR Derby 'every year'

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- No, Mike Trout will not be participating in this year's Home Run Derby. Yes, Major League Baseball keeps trying.

"Every year," Trout said. "Every year they ask me."

Trout, an All-Star starter for the seventh consecutive year after leading the sport in fan votes, has always declined to take part in the event. But he has never ruled out the possibility of someday changing his mind, even now.

"Maybe one year I'll say to myself, 'Hey, let's do it,'" Trout said. "I'm obviously a big fan of watching it. It's just what it is. I enjoyed watching it as a kid, thought it was cool. I just never really wanted to do it."

The Home Run Derby will move from Cleveland to Southern California next year, when the Los Angeles Dodgers host the All-Star Game, perhaps increasing the possibility that Trout takes part.

It isn't just MLB and the media that pester Trout about the Derby. It's friends back home, fans in road cities, even teammates. The Los Angeles Angels' star center fielder took part in a home run derby his senior year of high school, winning the event while batting left-handed. He did another as a 17-year-old playing A ball.

As a big leaguer, Trout said he prefers to maximize time with his family during the All-Star break. The workload is also a concern.

"It's a long, long night," Trout said. "A lot of swings."

Trout watched Albert Pujols compete in the Home Run Derby in 2015, when Pujols nearly beat Joc Pederson to advance to the final round. And there's a chance -- slim, it seems -- that he might watch another teammate in Shohei Ohtani compete this year.

Ohtani, who hit his 10th home run in his 44th game on Thursday, has expressed interest in taking part in the July 8 event, but there could be complications stemming from his ongoing recovery from Tommy John surgery.

"I think he would probably win," Trout said. "He's got some of the best power in the league. Obviously, this year it'd be different because he just came off Tommy John. I mean, I want him to do it; I'm sure he wants to do it. I don't know if our trainers would like that. You're coming off Tommy John and going up there taking full hacks. Will it affect his swing? Will it affect his arm? Probably not. But we need him back throwing 105."