Machado on the Derby: I’m not going to go out there and blow out my back, try to overdo it.
BALTIMORE— Manny Machado isn’t worried about the 2015 Gillette Home Run Derby presented by Head & Shoulders messing up his second-half swing. As the 23-year-old said Friday he’s just participating to live out a lifelong dream.
“I’m not going to go out there and blow out my back, try to overdo it. I’m just going to try to put some good swings out there and put on a show,” said Machado, who watched the Derby as a every year growing up. “I’m just going to try to hit the ball hard somewhere and if they go out, they go out. If they don’t, I guess I will be the one without homers there. Just go out there and have fun, I don’t think you have to go out there and try to win the thing. Just go out and have fun.”
Machado entered Friday with a career-high 19 homers and 48 RBIs and a .301 batting average out of the leadoff spot. O’s manager Buck Showalter said he’s not planning on moving Machado don in the order anytime soon and also isn’t concerned about his participation in the Derby.
“I’m not one of those guys that thinks the Home Run Derby [messes with guys swings], I’m sure you could find something statistically,” Showalter said. “It’s something that Manny has earned and I don’t want to take it away from him. It’s great for him and his family. If something like that is going to happen, it’s not meant to be anyway. We are not very strong mechanically if something like that will get in the way.”
Machado is one of four All-Stars for the Orioles this season— along with Adam Jones, Darren O’Day and Zach Britton—and has picked assistant hitting coach Einar Diaz to throw his batting practice.
“He’s always thrown to me for the last couple years and we have a chance of doing some good things out there,” Machado said.