Photo by Steve Woltmann/Intersport
July 3, 2012
By Stephen Trembley
By Stephen Trembley
OMAHA, Neb. --- Fresno State junior outfielder Aaron Judge won the 2012 TD Ameritrade College Baseball Home Run Derby in front of 22,403 people on Tuesday night at Omaha's TD Ameritrade Park.
Judge launched 16 home runs in three rounds, including four straight and the bonus ball when down to his final out for a total of eight home runs in the deciding round. He brought Bulldogs' volunteer assistant coach Ryan Overland to Omaha to be his pitcher for the event.
"I'm so excited for both Aaron and OV," Fresno State head baseball coach Mike Batesole said of Judge and Overland's win. "What a fun day of baseball. 'Dogs everywhere are fired up!"
Judge qualified for the finals with a total of eight home runs through the first two sessions before erupting for eight home runs to best LSU's Mason Katz and Virginia Tech's Tyler Horan for the championship.
"Words really can't describe it," Judge said of the experience. "Going into this competition I was just excited about going and being able to experience everything and get a chance to meet some awesome ball players and take a few swings at a great ball park. But going there and winning it with all the great guys there is amazing. I really just got to thank OV - he really helped me stay focus and have some fun so I'm glad he was there."
Judge became the second Bulldog to reach the Derby's finals. In 2010, former Bulldog Jordan Ribera finished second in the inaugural derby, which was held as the final event at Rosenblatt Stadium.
The event will air tape-delayed on CBS on Saturday, July 7 at 11 a.m. PT.
Judge was one of eight individuals from across the nation selected to compete at the event and will be the second Bulldog to participate in the three-year-old contest.
Judge was the only student-athlete from the West picked to participate, as he joined players from the ACC (3), SEC (2), Southern (1) and Ohio Valley (1) to represent the MW for the first time officially by any male Fresno State student-athlete.
Swimmer Dani Yoho was the first Fresno State student-athlete to compete in any competition when she swam the 50-meter freestyle on Sunday at the Olympic Trials, also held in Omaha.
In 2012, Judge launched four home runs, including two off Stanford ace pitcher and the Pittsburgh Pirates' top draft pick (No. 8 overall) Mark Appel, in leading Fresno State to its seventh-straight conference championship and the NCAA Tournament for the sixth time in the last seven seasons.
Judge, a two-time first-team all-conference honoree and a 2011 Freshman All-American, also posted 27 RBI, went 13-for-15 in stolen base attempts, scored 47 runs and had 14 doubles. He recorded a season batting average of .332.
2012 TD Ameritrade College Home Run Derby Participants
Daniel Aldrich - College of Charleston, Redshirt Sophomore
LB Dantzler - South Carolina, Junior
Derek Fisher - Virginia, Freshman
Tyler Horan - Virginia Tech, Redshirt Sophomore (Finalist)
Aaron Judge - Fresno State, Sophomore (Champion)
Mason Katz - LSU, Junior (Finalist)
Daniel Palka - Georgia Tech, Sophomore
Zach Stephens - Tennessee Tech, Sophomore
"Discover Fresno State Athletics!" --- To stay connected with Fresno state Baseball throughout the summer, be sure to follow @FSAthletics on Twitter and Fresno State Athletics on Facebook.
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